To make a quail brooder, burn out the middle of a plastic bin lid, cover the hole with mesh, mount a flood lamp and reflector near the top of the bin, and line the bottom of the bin with several layers of paper towels. The supplies you need for this 90-minute project are a large lidded plastic bin, paper towels, a soldering iron, a paper cone mask, wire mesh, wire cutters, a staple gun, a hammer, a heat lamp, a chick waterer, a feeder unit, a reflector array and mounting hardware.
- Prepare for soldering
Put the bin lid and the soldering iron in a well-ventilated area. Plug in a soldering iron, and put on a paper cone mask.
- Solder the lid
Use the soldering iron to draw a large rectangle in the middle of the lid. Pop the interior out, and discard it. Turn off the soldering iron.
- Cover the lid with mesh
Lay a sheet of wire mesh on top of the lid. Use the wire cutters to remove all of the mesh extending more than 1 inch past the soldered window opening. Fasten the mesh to the lid with a staple gun, then flip the lid over and use a hammer to flatten the protruding staple legs.
- Mount the heat lamp and reflector array
Snap the lid onto the bin. Install a 100-watt bulb in the reflector unit, and place it bulb-down on the lid. Do not fasten it in place.
- Add paper towels
Remove the bin's lid, and place five or six layers of paper towels on the bottom of the brooder. Set the waterer and feeder in the bin, as far from the heat lamp as possible.