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5 week old chicks ready to go outside?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I have a mixed flock of 5. Two standard breed 5 week old chicks (lavender orp and salmon faverolle) and three 8 week old silkies. I live in Michigan where the weather just made the switch to fall.. 60's during the day and 40's at night. When is the opproproate time to move these guys to the coop? They aren't cute fluff balls anymore and they are stinking up my laundry room. wink.png I've been turning their heat lamp off during the day and on at night.
post #2 of 6

You could move them in right now. You just need to put their heat lamp in, turn it on at night, and then turn it off in the morning. 

2 Barred Rocks, 3 Rhode Island Reds, 1 Gold Star, 1 Gold Cochin, 7 Easter Eggers, 1 black cat, 3 black and white cats, 1 white and grey cat, 1 brown cat, 1 grey and white striped cat.
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2 Barred Rocks, 3 Rhode Island Reds, 1 Gold Star, 1 Gold Cochin, 7 Easter Eggers, 1 black cat, 3 black and white cats, 1 white and grey cat, 1 brown cat, 1 grey and white striped cat.
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post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeepDishChix View Post

You could move them in right now. You just need to put their heat lamp in, turn it on at night, and then turn it off in the morning. 

That's the issue. I would have moved them in already but I don't have the option for electricity in my coop.
post #4 of 6

The weather is roughly the same where I'm at and my 3 mixed breed chicks are 3 weeks,give or take,i have 2 different heat lamp bulbs,a red 250 w and a clear 150 w,what one would ya'll use? (60's daytime,upper 40's at night) my coop is small. (4'x4'x4' tall).

post #5 of 6

I had had enough of the smell and the mess when I had my chicks last year, so out to the coop they went.  That was on April 1st and they were 5.5 weeks old. The coop wasn't even all the way finished, but at that point they either went outside or we were going to be eating 22 "cornish game hens" for supper!   I put a heat lamp in there for them, then spent the rest of the night jumping out of bed, putting on my boots and coat, and running out to check on them. They weren't even near it - they were snuggled in a pile in front of their pop door. I had a wireless thermometer out there with the receiver on my nightstand and I watched as the temperature went down into the 20s.  I was scared to death to go out there the next morning, but they were just fine - standing at the pop door waiting for me to let them out.

 

The next night was almost exactly the same, except I only checked on them once during the night.  Again, they were fine, not even close to the heat lamp.  The next morning that heat lamp came out for good, and was packed away somewhere in the garage.  They weren't using it and I wasn't risking a fire out there.  And of course, that night it snowed.  We got our last snowfall on June 6th. The chicks didn't miss a beat -  they just kept eating and growing and getting stronger every day.  They loved days when it got up to 40 but every night they went to bed just fine, eventually teaching themselves to roost.

 

I think they'll be fine.  The days are getting shorter and the temps aren't going to go up much any more, so it's better for them - and for you - to begin to get them acclimated before those temps really plummet. The only concern I might have is that Silkies are usually a little more "cold tender" but if they can snuggle with the others and each other that will help. Just keep an eye on them. Also make sure that you have nice deep bedding that they can burrow down into. By the way, I live in Northern Wyoming not far from Yellowstone Park.  I've raised 3 more groups of chicks outside in the run, and I don't use a heat lamp for even day old chicks when the temps are in the teens and twenties.  These little critters are tougher than we give them credit for.

post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blooie View Post

I had had enough of the smell and the mess when I had my chicks last year, so out to the coop they went.  That was on April 1st and they were 5.5 weeks old. The coop wasn't even all the way finished, but at that point they either went outside or we were going to be eating 22 "cornish game hens" for supper!   I put a heat lamp in there for them, then spent the rest of the night jumping out of bed, putting on my boots and coat, and running out to check on them. They weren't even near it - they were snuggled in a pile in front of their pop door. I had a wireless thermometer out there with the receiver on my nightstand and I watched as the temperature went down into the 20s.  I was scared to death to go out there the next morning, but they were just fine - standing at the pop door waiting for me to let them out.

The next night was almost exactly the same, except I only checked on them once during the night.  Again, they were fine, not even close to the heat lamp.  The next morning that heat lamp came out for good, and was packed away somewhere in the garage.  They weren't using it and I wasn't risking a fire out there.  And of course, that night it snowed.  We got our last snowfall on June 6th. The chicks didn't miss a beat -  they just kept eating and growing and getting stronger every day.  They loved days when it got up to 40 but every night they went to bed just fine, eventually teaching themselves to roost.

I think they'll be fine.  The days are getting shorter and the temps aren't going to go up much any more, so it's better for them - and for you - to begin to get them acclimated before those temps really plummet. The only concern I might have is that Silkies are usually a little more "cold tender" but if they can snuggle with the others and each other that will help. Just keep an eye on them. Also make sure that you have nice deep bedding that they can burrow down into. By the way, I live in Northern Wyoming not far from Yellowstone Park.  I've raised 3 more groups of chicks outside in the run, and I don't use a heat lamp for even day old chicks when the temps are in the teens and twenties.  These little critters are tougher than we give them credit for.

Thanks for sharing your experiences. I treat them like they're babies instead of birds! 😉 it's been pretty chilly here in Michigan, even during the day. So I think I'll start putting them outside during the day mid week this week and then keeping them outside over night weekend. I'm a little concerned with the silkies but but they need to learn to be outside sooner or later, right?! I have a small coop and all five of my chicks sleep all cuddled up so I'm sure they will do the same outside and keep each other warm.
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