Any AZ chicken people out there? I am looking for some advice on raising chicks in the desert. I'm in Mesa. Does it get too hot out here? I have four 20 day old chicks, 3 Buff Orps and 1 leghorn. Do we need to do anything special here
Lots of shade; lots of water. Install an automatic waterer. Miss water one day, and you are out of the chicken business. Put a lawn sprinkler in the chicken yard on a timer so that it goes off several times a day.
The rains we have had in the last couple of days produced a bounty of grass and weeds. Chickens love dandy lions, mustard weed and winter grass. Let them go at it.
I'm in the Verde Valley. It's nothing to hit 110* in July/August up here.
Make sure the chickens have lots of shade and fresh water. As Rufus stated, mist the run several times a day. I even keep ice blocks, frozen milk jugs, or 2 liter bottles to put in the hen house and coop for them. They'll stand on the ice block and peck at it. You'd be suprised how much they will cool the area. I also freeze 16 oz water bottles and make sure to keep them in their water during the day.
Restrict their scratch. It's a "hot feed" and increases their metabolism to digest, causing their bodies to heat up. I also keep lots of watermelon, canteloupe, grapes, etc around for them during the summer months.
With a little additional effort on your part, they'll make it through the heat just fine.
I'm in Az too. What great advice.
We got our first chickens ( 3 Silkies) in Oct of last year so, they haven't had to deal with the heat yet. We have since added 4 more Silkies to the family and have 6 eggs that are do to hatch on tuesday. : )
I also live in Mesa! I have raised healthy, happy chickens without ever having even THOUGHT about misting them or supplying ice.
I do live in central Mesa with mature trees and grass in the backyard, but I know my friend in AJ raised happy chickens and he just made sure they had water.
Right now I have 3 6 week old chicks, this is the first time I have raised chicks w/out a dog and I am worried about the neighborhhod semi-feral cat!
I live in the Verde Valley about 15 miles from Chicken-mama. It does get hot up here but my coop is always in the shade as is half the run all day. Never had to mist or provide ice yet but I will if they look distressed.
Plenty of water and no cracked corn!
We have a whirlybird on the roof of the coop and that draws a lot of the hot air out. I make sure all the doors (3) to the coop are open and both windows for cross ventilation.
I have a friend who has had chickens for years in Peoria and they only thing she does is keeps the mister going during the day.
HI everybody. I'm in Glendale just down from the Mother Ship. I got my chicks in Aug. I have a tractor kind of thing and they free range in the yard. If I put a misting system in there will it mold the straw? Should I worry about it? I do have a waterer that I fill but I also have a hose that leaks that they like drinking from. My girls like digging holes in the yard to roll in also. Keep up on the tips.
I live in Mesa and want to keep my chicks enclosed in a side yard. If there's not much breeze there, would it be better to move their pen? And as for their coop, it doesn't have windows. Should I cut out two?
Thanks for the tips so far.
Does anyone here hatch their own chicks, or do you get them from a hatchery or feed barn? I want to get another chick since one of mine died last night. It was really sad, I found her trapped under a small piece of plywood I had used to close off the pen at night. I think my kids had moved it and she somehow knocked it onto herself. So sad!