I do not plug in a heat lamp until it's under 15 degrees, but then I do. One important thing I think is to cover the bulb part of the lamp with protective wire covering. My chickens fly off their roost to the floor (they don't hop down) so a chicken could easily hit the heat lamp. Feathers are EXTREMELY flammable. I know people keep them in the cold, but as one poster said the dryness is the biggest factor. I was at the feed store the other day when we were having daytime temps with highs of about 18. The clerk told me that one customer came in and said they had to put a chicken down because it was out in the run in that weather and got severe frostbite on its feet. Chickens aren't the brightest bulbs, and won't stay in when frostbite is a possibility. I keep my chickens in the coop during the day when it's that cold. They complain, but too bad. LOL
Heat lamp thoughts! - Page 5
I am so glad you asked this question. I actually live in Charleston, SC and our temps are no where near as cold as yours or others mentioned here. I'm new to chickens and being the "mother hen" I have been running 2 heat lamps when it drops below 45 just to get the ladies warm. The information here is well support and helps me know what I should be doing with mine. Thank you ....all of you for helping her and me.
I think we need to remember that all "stress" is not bad- without any cold stress, chickens won't grow down. And of course feed intake will go up inthe cold- eating more is an adaptation, and positive one ...... and birds in confinemet can be provided with a tub to dust bathe in ...... that's up to their keeper .....
Plants, Animals or People, the principle is the same: If you mollycoddle them and protect them from Everything, they will never develop the ability to adapt, and will be vulnerable to Anything.
It all comes down to what the person taking care of the birds in question wants...... if you want a spoiled, unproductive, vulnerable pet that might inadvertently burn it's coop down around itself (and maybe your house, too!) by all means, give it a heat lamp, and all the treats it wants ..... your birds, your call. Just don't anthropomorphize them: they are chickens, and don't make your decisions based on warm and fuzzy feelings. Do some research and make an informed decision.
jimbob86: You're being rude. Some of us have different opinions, and are not morons.
I have my coup split into a clean side (no chicken access) and a dirty side.
I use an interior car warmer that I control with a digital thermostat set to -7 c.
Lights are on a timer to give them more "daylight"
I have 3 girls and 2 boys (Black Australorps)
They seem to be doing great and I am averaging 2.5 eggs per day.
Good Morning! I live in Heber City, UT which is in the mountains just East of Salt Lake City, UT I saw your post and thought that I would share what we have experienced with our girls.
So far this year, we have reached -9 degrees. Last year we reached -18 degrees! I was certain that at -18 degrees all our chickens would have frozen when I went out to find them. Not the case! In fact, all 6 chickens actually laid that day We have sexlinks and they have proven to be very hardy birds. A few things that we have done to help our girls stay warm is in early Nov. I line our 10'x10' chicken run with thick plastic. It costs us about $45 to do so, but it has proven to be a very good thing for us and our flock. We DO NOT use a heat lamp because of all the dangers I have read about heat lamps. I do put a solar light in their coop every night to give them some fake daylight to help with the girls laying. They don't always all lay but we do believe it helps. My husband laughs at me because I close our girls in at night and let them out of their coop in the morning. Our coop does have ventilation and is dry. Their run stays dry as it is covered and the plastic keeps the wind off them. I also put bails of straw around the inside of my coop which the girls LOVE to lay on and sun in the day. It is amazing how much the sun warms up their run during the day. It is a noticeable difference when we walk in to their run to feed them. When summertime weather hits I take down the plastic so the air flows through their run. I thought you might enjoy reading what we do up here in the colder mountain climate.
Thank you bbroadhead for all that info. I'm going to have to check into the solar light. That is a good idea. Like I said before, this is my first year to ever try chickens. I have found them to be very stress relieving. My grand children are having so much fun naming them and looking for eggs. I still have a lot to learn so keep sharing all this good information.
I tried a heat lamp in my coop but noticed that my chickens only wanted to sit by it in the coop all day. They never left the coop for anything. I guess when it's cold outside I would rather be in a warm house too but I'm not covered in feathers. I finally removed the heat lamp and now they hardly spend any time in the coop.
As long as your coop is draft free it should be warmer than outside and I think you should be fine.
I live in Missouri and when the temperature drops below 20-25 F I turn a small heater own. It barely take the edge off but the stay close to it. I have 18 total. 6 are B Orpingtons.
I've read MANY different opinions. I decided to do what I feel comfortable with. They seem to lay more consistently and show fewer signs of stress. Yes, they are animals but common sense tells you they probably likes little heat in cold weather. They aren't reptiles.
uote name="ashrich6" url="/t/1071201/heat-lamp-thoughts#post_16325613"]Hi!
I have 4, 1 1/2 year old Buff Orpingtons. We live in Salt Lake City and this winter is a cold one. WAY colder then the past couple years. Lately the nights have dropped to 6-10 degrees. Tonight it is suppose to drop to 19 degrees. On top of all this, I noticed 2 of my hens have decided now is the time to molt! One hen has a bare bum!
We have not put a heat lamp out there because I have read on here that they catch fire, explode or the chickens won't adjust to the temperatures well. I went today to the farm store for hay and chicken feed and I asked an employee what I should do and she said to get a lamp since they are molting and how cold it has been. So I bought one.
What I did was set outside of their coop and on the run where they walk out. The lamp is covered and is over their food and water. It's about 4 feet from the ground. I hope this is the right decision!
What else are people doing this winter?
I am hoping to get a timer on it so it turns on about 5 am so when they wake up they walk out to a little bit of warmth.
Thoughts and opinions are appreciated!!!
Edited by sjeanise - 1/15/16 at 10:35am