8 week old chicks and moving to coop

Lpursch

In the Brooder
Mar 25, 2018
7
4
21
First I would love to thank you all for the wealth of information that I have been enjoying for 2 months now on this site. I am new to raising chicks and have 7 lovely ladies that are so ready to stay out in their coop. I have been taking them out for 5 hours the last 3 weekends when it has been 50 degree temps. The problem is it get down in the 20-30's at night here in Indiana. They are currently in a kennel in our garage that usually stays around 57 degrees (NO heat lamp).
My question is will they be alright in their coop full time at night when it gets so cold (I don't plan on using any heat). It is insulated but just afraid to shock them or worse. If they are okay to stay out there, should I keep food/water in their enclosed run or move it into coop. Also, should I keep the door to their coop closed at night and reopen in early morning before I go to work (its usually still in low 30's when I leave). My coop and run size is 5x8 and can accommodate 8 chicks.
Sorry for all the questions. Just don't want to hurt any of my precious girls.
Thank you again for all of your knowledge!
 

AmandaMBG

Songster
5 Years
Apr 16, 2016
548
78
136
Southern Utah
At 8 weeks they should be fully feathered and perfectly fine for moving to outside. Just make sure you go out at dusk to make sure they are shut in the coop. It may take them some time to know where to go at night. Also I would look into your coop/run size. The coop alone should be at least several sq ft per bird. With the run being another 10 or so sq ft per bird. You only have 5 sq ft total per bird with coop and run based off what you just said. Chickens will cannibalize without enough space. Of course if you are free ranging every day you may be okay.
 

Lpursch

In the Brooder
Mar 25, 2018
7
4
21
Thank you so much for your advise! It is so appreciated! We were planning on extending the run next month but this might move up our plans. Would you keep closing them in the coop at night and opening the door in the morning until is stays warmer at night? Thank you again.
 

AmandaMBG

Songster
5 Years
Apr 16, 2016
548
78
136
Southern Utah
I would keep doing it until they are putting themselves to bed every night. Sometimes you will get one or two that just keep wanting to roost outside. You don't want to let them set up that habit. Once they all are going in alone for several nights in a row I would stop worrying about it. Also I would block your nesting boxes off until they are getting ready to lay. Chicks are really prone to wanting to hang out in the nest boxes and even roost in there until they are big enough to figure out the roosts. That's another habit you want to prevent from developing.
 

Lpursch

In the Brooder
Mar 25, 2018
7
4
21
Wow thank you! My girls are going out tomorrow. I never knew about blocking the boxes and am going to do that right away. Such helpful information. Thank you!
 

Lpursch

In the Brooder
Mar 25, 2018
7
4
21
Thank you. You’ve set my mind at ease! I will be taking them out there tomorrow. Thank you again!!
 

SueT

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
May 27, 2015
9,867
31,353
1,007
SW MO
Let us know how it goes...I imagine that like mine, yours will be thrilled with their new quarters....
 

Lpursch

In the Brooder
Mar 25, 2018
7
4
21
Update....my girls have been out in their coop and run for a week now. They have been so happy!! The night it got down to 24 they were locked up tight in their coop all snug. I put extra straw in it for them and they did just fine. Thank you again for the advice!
 

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