The traditional Kienyeji chicken nurture their hatchlings in providing warmth and food.
A poultry farmer has to provide warmth ,food and water to the hatchlings in a special space termed the brooder.
The enslosure (brooder) should have a source of heat and a special flooring of fresh wood shavings.
Source of heat could be a Brooder Pot, Charcoal Jiko, Electric heat lamp or a Paraffin lamp.
Note that, Briquettes are safer ,cleaner and more efficient than the traditional charcoal.
One kerosene lamp can be used for 50 chicks.
Two Brooder Pots can hold heat for up to 500 chicks.
One factor to determine the amount of heat needed is weather condition at that time.
For the 1st two weeks a brooder guard should be utilised.Its made from hardboard or stiff cardboard.
It keeps the chicks near the heat source and prevents them from straying away.
Brooder floor space should be 25 chicks per one meter squared (M²).
Temperature should be kept at 95° F for the 1st Two weeks, then lowered by 5° F for each week up to 8weeks.
How to observe response of chicks to determine if heat is high or low:
If the the brooder is very hot they will go away from the heat source.
If the brooder is cold they will crowd around the heat source.
When the temperature is proper they will be evenly spaced out in the enslosure.
One to Two weeks, before bringing in the day old chicks, throughly clean and disinfect the brooder space.
Hygiene should be observed, keep away any wet litter, dampness must not be allowed at any moment.
Let fresh air circulate freely and if possible open up during the day for the light rays, this reduces humidity.