chicken run and heater at night

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by littlebowpeeps, May 17, 2009.

  1. littlebowpeeps

    littlebowpeeps Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 27, 2009
    Oak Harbor WA
    I finished the coop and the run... ok... my husband did, but that's beside the point [​IMG] and now I am standing back, looking at a patch of dirt. I didn't want to put it on grass because I know they will just ruin it anyways, and we had a bare level area that was just dirt. So now what do I put in the chicken run? I still have the bedding that I used for their brooder- a big bag actually. But they seem to like scratching and digging around in the dirt. I am just concerned with the rain- living in washington and all.

    Tonight will be the first night the peepers are out of the house. They are 4 weeks old now... should I put out their heater for them? It gets down to mid 50s-60s at night. There are 6 of them, will they huddle and keep warm?

    Last edited: May 17, 2009
  2. Omran

    Omran Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2008
    Bagdad KY
    Yes I will put on the heat lamp at least till temp start to stay above 65F, I think it will be ok for them to dig in the dirt, mine do that all the time and they love it.
    if your run on a slope, or afried of mud, try to install a fench drain around it that will keep the run a little protected from big o rain.
  3. CityChook

    CityChook Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2008
    Minneapolis, MN
    My Coop
    I put sand in my run. The girls love digging and dusting in it and it's awesome for poo management. Don't know if you have a roof, but it also is better for mud management. I just bought playsand from Home Depot (in the 50 lb. bags).

    If it were me, I'd keep their light on them for a few more weeks. Especially since they are outside where temperatures can flex so much.

    Have fun!
  4. lunkerchicken

    lunkerchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    My girls still haven't made the trip to the big coop and run yet, but I have plans of adding sand to the run. Most of the run will have a corrugated roof over it to keep it somewhat dry.
  5. littlebowpeeps

    littlebowpeeps Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 27, 2009
    Oak Harbor WA
    sand is a great idea! I actually have sand and used it to level the area. Thanks! I got a thermastat for my heater, so that worked well. I was worried all night, but it turned out OK! Whew!!
  6. lux_interior

    lux_interior Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2009
    yeah I put mine outside around 4 weeks too, and I also put their heat lamp with them... I live in chicago, and it's only may, so it's still chilly at night!
  7. chickens3

    chickens3 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 5, 2009
    Eau Claire, Michigan
    First how old are your chickens and do they have feathers yet when they do you do not need the light they will take care of themselfs
  8. littlebowpeeps

    littlebowpeeps Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 27, 2009
    Oak Harbor WA
    The chicks are about 4 weeks old now. Today I got a reptile heating rock for the chickies and we'll see how that works. Less of a fire hazard and they can lay on it or around it if they choose. I'll try that tonight.
  9. Autumn Mama

    Autumn Mama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 15, 2009
    British Columbia,
    A reptile heating rock? Wow! Kewl. [​IMG]

    Yes, we're neighbours over the line in Fort Langley, BC and tonight was our 6 and 8 week -olds' first night out in the almost-done-coop too! So excited to move into the next phase of chook raising (and glad to *finally* have my laundry room back to normal, lol!)

    We tried to put them out last night, but chickened out because we didn't have an extension cord long enough to run it to the coop for the heat lamp, and I felt it was too cold. So DH brought them all back into the house, all sleepy. It was cute! But I feel better knowing they'll be warm.

    Tonight we put in their 250 watt brooder heatlamp, double-secured, as I was concerned about night temps too. Tonight and all of this past week it's hovered around 50 F. So I just checked on them, and they're all sleeping on their roosts, and look cozy! [​IMG]

    I plan to use the supplementary heat for a couple of weeks, to acclimatize them, and allow them to fully feather out. HTH!!
    Last edited: May 19, 2009
  10. littlebowpeeps

    littlebowpeeps Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 27, 2009
    Oak Harbor WA
    Yup it has been kind of chilly at night. 2nd night and the chicks are alright! The reptile heating rock was a hit! They were all huddled on it. so cute! I was just afriad with the heat light that it might get too hot, or be a fire hazard. It was kind of a cool idea. You should have seen the look on the face of the guy at the pet store!

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