9 LOHMANN TIERZUCHT › MANAGEMENT GUIDE 9 › Trigger nipples/water cups to encourage birds to drink. › Check the environment temperature at bird level. › Be aware that no heaters or blowers are pushing hot air on the birds. Floor Systems › Before arrival of the chicks, litter should be spread only after heating the house, when the floor has reached the optimum temperature. Softwood shavings or straw make suitable litter. › After arrival, place chicks under brooders as soon as possible. › Measure the brooder temperature by plac- ing the thermometer 8 cm inside the outer edge of the brooder and 8 cm above the litter. › Dip the beaks of a few chicks into water and trigger nipple or water cups to help them start drinking. › Supply the chicks with additional feeding bowls to ensure a better feed intake in the first few days. After cleaning and refilling the bowls put them back in another place close to the old place. › Chicks should be fully feathered before brooding equipment has to be removed. Body Temperature of the Chicks The body temperature of housed chicks is a very useful indicator to adjust house temperature in an optimum way. A simple tool to measure the body temperature of day old chicks is usage of modern ear thermometers, known from human medicine. The correct application tomeasure the body temperature is just to touch the cloaca gently with the thermometer probe. The optimal body temperature of the chicks is about 40 to 41 °C. Obtain samples of the chicks distributed in different parts of the house in order to have reliable results. Proceed in a way you normally do while weighing chicks/pullets to check their uniformity. Collect the infor- mation, calculate the average and adjust house temperature accordingly to achieve optimal chick temperatures. For example increase the house temperature by 0.5 °C, if the average body temperature of the chicks is 39.5 °C. HOUSING CHICKS