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12 Chicks growing fast! Need transitional housing ideas pre - permanent coop

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

HI everyone, 

 

This is my first post in BackYard Chickens - happy to be part of  & have access to this forum! :)  

 

I am the proud 1st time momma hen to 12 baby chicks that are 2 weeks old today.  Am concerned that at the rate they are growing their current housing ( a 100 gal stock tank) will need replaced by this coming weekend.  The gals won't be ready to put outside in their permanent coop for 4-5 weeks.   

 

I'm considering splitting the chicks in between 2 stock tanks (6 in each).   My worry:  separating the chicks. Will it break bonds they have made? 

 

What have you done to transition your chicks from baby phase to intermediate phase?  Suggestions welcome.  Thanks! 

post #2 of 3

Welcome!  They should be okay in your brooder for a while yet, at least for another week.  Mine do go out in their side of the coop, with their heat lamp, at two to three weeks of age.  When it's a little less cold outside...  Set it up so they have the heat source in one corner of the coop, with food and water nearby.  I check the temperature right under the lamp, so it's good for their age, and then watch the babies to make sure they are comfortable.  They love having all that room to fly and run around!  Mary

post #3 of 3

I recommend you consider moving them into their coop now. With a reliable heat source, they will be fine. Chicks adapt to cool temps very well.

 

I wrote an article on brooding outdoors. It's linked below this post, and you might find it interesting. There are advantages to being outdoors that can't be had indoors in a brooder.

 

My present baby chicks are one week old today. Last week, I installed them into their safe pen in my run with a heating pad cave. They were one day old. It was in the high 60s that day, and those tiny little things were racing all over the pen, which is around thirty square feet, and in spite of the cool temperature, they spent very little time under the heat.

 

The nights have been getting down into the high 30s and tonight is no exception. These chicks are thriving, as did my two batches raised this way last year, and it was even colder than this year on this date. Chicks do not need to be constantly under heat or brooded in a warm environment. It's actually more advantageous for them to be exposed to cool ambient temps because they adapt much better to cold and feather out faster than in a warm room in a house.

 

Read the article and consider a different option. Just because brooding indoors is what most people do doesn't mean it's necessary best for chicks.

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