On Sunday I moved the heat lamp up a little- It was time to decrease by 5 degrees. The chicks are eating and drinking normally but when they sleep they look like this..... Would you considered this huddling? Do you think they are cold? Thanks
It is just my first year also but that is how my chicks sleep no matter where in the brooder they sleep and I know they are not cold because they have the option of moving closer to the heat lamp and do not but still cuddle up. According to all my reading if they are huddled and really chirping a lot even under the heat lamp it is too cold but if they are just bedding down together but only an occasional chirp they are fine. The heat source does not need to heat the entire brooder, they just need access to a warm enough spot and it is better if they have a cooler area to retreat to because over heating is just as or more dangerous. As long as you have a spot that gets warm enough they can go to and they are not chirping excessively while huddled right under the lamp I would assume they are just fine.
They are fine when chicks are born they automatically form a flock with the chicks that hatch with them and they bond. Each hatch I have they all do this and still the older ones that hatched together have there own flock and stick together...If they were cold they would be chirping real loud and staying right under the lamp trying to get warm where ever they could. hope this helps
Yes, move your light to one side. They do need to be able to experience some cooler temps, this will help them acclimate. It's best if they can run around in cooler temps and then retreat to the heated area when they need to.
Mine peeped at various volumes depending on what was going on. You will definitely know the difference between normal peeping and the peeping of chicks that are unhappy.
I have a dumb question.....If they say you should start at 90 degrees then decrease by 5 every week, should the whole brooder's temp be reading at 85 or should it just be the spot under the heat lamp reading that temp. Sorry - I am very new to this!
They only need the target range of heat under the lamp. It's much more healthy for them if the rest of the brooder is cooler. And, that target range is just a suggestion to give people a general idea of how much heat to provide. You'll most likely find that your chicks will be fine with a bit less heat. Let their behavior tell you what they need. If they are standing up under the light, they're definitely not warm enough. If they're trying to crawl under each other, they're cold. You can also turn the lamp off for a couple of hours each day after they're a week or so old. The worst thing any one can do with new chicks is to put them in a little box where the heat level is the same throughout, and the chicks can't get away from the heat. If you ever see a chick panting... that's cause for alarm.