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Chicks, Northern Nevada Winter, When to move out

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Good day, 

This is my first post on BYC but have been following the website for over a year, thank you to all posters for the great advice on here.  I am not new to chickens, I got my first chickens May 2014.  But as many of you know sometimes we just want more.  So against all infinite wisdom i purchased some new chicks back in September.  

 

In the flock i have two Silkie Bantams, two Easter Eggers, two Speckled Sussex, and two Australorp.

 

Today is November 5 and I have this

 

 

 My questions are:

 

1)  Do the chicks above look fully feathered.  I know this is important before moving them outside.  

2)  Did I make a mistake with bantams?  They may not be as winter hardy as the others so should they stay in longer?  I would rather not separate the chicks, safety in numbers.

3)  With temperatures below freezing is it still to early to put out even if fully feathered.  (They will be 7 weeks old on the 9th of November.) If i put in the coop i will have supplemental heating.

4)  What is the best way to integrate the new chicks to the 3 hens I already have. 2 Orpington's and 1 SLW?

 

Thank you in advance for the help.

 

7SS

post #2 of 6

:welcome

 

Where are you housing them right now?  If Mama Broody hatched them in the fall (and yes, some broodies get their seasons or hormones mixed up and choose to brood at inopportune times) they would already be weaned from her care, and out frolicking in the snow with the rest of your flock.  So, the issue is:  what temperatures are they used to right now, and how will you plan to harden them off to the existing coop temperatures?  They really shouldn't need supplemental heat in the coop if they're properly hardened.  Just like plants, they need to be acclimated to outdoor weather.  Have you been giving them day trips outside?  I assume they are no longer getting any heat?  Do you have a garage you can put them in at night?  So, at this point, I'd work on getting them outdoors for fresh air at mid day, and take your cue from them... if they act cold or stressed, bring them in.  Can you perhaps set up some sort of sun room area so they get lots of sun outside without any chilling breezes?  Then you could slowly cut back on the amount of "protection until they are spending all or most of the day in the outdoors.  Next step would be to move them to the coop for an overnight, perhaps giving them a protected dog crate, a big pile of hay to snuggle in.  A few nights of that, and they should be ready to face the big outdoor world 24/7.


Edited by lazy gardener - 11/5/15 at 10:21am

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Nope purchased the chicks and have been raising them in a brooder in the garage.  Currently the have no heat during the day the garage sits at around 55 - 60 then i turn the heat back on during the night cause the temp in the garage can freeze. 

Have not take them outside much.  So will work on that over the next few days.  Is there a proper way to harden or just give them plenty of pine shavings and let nature do the rest?

 

Thank you,

post #4 of 6

What are you using for heat in the garage?  If a heat lamp, step down to a 40 W bulb.  If more of a central type of heat, cut it way back.  What are they in for a brooder?  If it's nice and big, stop giving them any night time heat, after stepping it back for a few nights, and give them a pile of hay in the corner to snuggle into.  Same in the coop, give them lots of bedding, especially hay to snuggle into.

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thank you for your feed back.  It has been a month now and we have had some really cold temps.  0 to -5 F but the chicks have done just fine adjusting to there new living quarters.  The only challenge i am still having is getting them to go into the coop at night.  So every night like clock work we go out and pick them up 1 at a time and put them in the coop.  :rolleyes:  The joys of chicks.  I do believe its because of the 3 older chickens that are in the coop but i am sure they will come around.  Below are a couple pictures of the flock hanging around looking a little nervous back when i first put them out.


Thank you, 

 

7SS

 

 

 

post #6 of 6

Here's a simple method to get chicks to go into the coop all by themselves. No need at all to chase them down and stuff them into the coop.

 

The trick is to wait until dusk and you see the chicks congregating together making soft bedtime noises, kind of like toads and tree frogs sound. Then you get into the coop and lure them inside. It helps to have a light inside the coop so the chicks will be confident where they're going.

 

If you have trouble getting your chicks to come to you when you summon them, it's time you taught them using treats and a verbal cue. It takes minutes to get them programmed to come when summoned in this way because all chicks have treat cravings stored in their DNA.

 

Chasing down chicks at roosting time is counter productive since it stresses everyone concerned and it's not fun. You want your chicks to think of roosting time as a pleasant experience, so it's time to consider doing things differently.

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