Are my chicks feathered enough to go in their coop?


Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Jun 27, 2021
I am hoping to put the girls in their coop on Fri. The oldest will be 4 weeks then, with the younger a few days behind. Here are pics of a few of them. They can fly to the top of my 2 ft high brooder from the ground! Low temps will be in the mid 50s with highs between 70 & 80. The room I’m brooding in ranges between 75-80 during the day and down to 60 at night with their heat plate, which they usually sleep in the border of, not under completely. Thanks so much!


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Might be a bit cool for them in the 50s. If you can put some indirect heat in the coop (in case they need it), you might do so.

Chicks, in the absence of a mother hen to keep them warm, need an ambient of about 95 degrees their 1st week, 90 the 2nd week, 85 the 3rd week, and so on. At 4 weeks, they need about 80 degrees.

Like you, however, we've found those are pretty much just guidelines, and we've had chicks spend time in temperatures that were 20 degrees or more below their "guideline", but we monitored them closely in that time, taking them back to a heat source if they started showing signs of being cold (huddling together, shaking, etc).

In a coop overnight, that might be too long a period in cold weather without the heat source. Word of caution: if putting a heat source in the coop, be very sure that you're not creating a fire hazard: no flames, no red-hot heating elements, heater fully secured to something (floor/wall) so it won't fall OR an emergency cutoff should it topple, etc. We use small, ceramic heaters for brooder heat and coop heat.

Let us know how the move goes :)
Personally, I'd say during the day time they're fine to be outside but inside at night with a heat source. I'm not sure of the breeds you have, but I myself live about 10 minutes from Canada(most say I live in South Canada) in NYS so I purposely buy winter hardy breeds. To help you keeping them contained many people will fashion some sort of wire cover to put on the top of their brooder to keep them from getting out. My brooder was in the garage which the only heat source was a heat lamp securely in place and my birds pretty much from week 4 got as close or as far from it as needed. Mine jumped out too but there wasn't anything they could get into and hurt themselves so I basically gave up on containing them. They went back when they were ready. Every evening they'd all jump out and explore the garage then go back to the brooder for bed and they'd all be in the brooder in the morning when I'd check on them. That was nice with them in the garage, they poo on the floor. Let it dry then sweep it up...or one of my 3 goofball dogs would eat it...🤢🤮
Outside yesterday.
Coop (shed) got delivered yesterday! Lol. I have to add 1/4 hardware cloth to the windows, and saw a bunch of circles near the ceiling for ventilation (my project for today & tomorrow.) It won’t take long! DH is taking Friday off so I have help to move the feisty teenagers!
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