Do chicks need the heat lamp constantly?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by garbagePaw, Apr 4, 2012.

  1. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    The light is on 24/7 but that doesn't mean their total environment needs to be 95F all the time. Let the chicks decide.

    We brood outside. It was 24F last night. Not a problem. They sleep under the lamp, as needed, but spend much of their time playing, eating and drinking away from the hot spot. It is natural. Chicks under a broody mother do not spend 24/7 under her, of course. They regulate themselves very well.
    1 person likes this.
  2. Ourfamilyflock

    Ourfamilyflock Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2012
    Central Oregon
    Our Brooder, sits close to the fireplace, so we turn off the lamp at night and cover the brooder, the chicks fall asleep right away, and stay asleep till morning when we uncover them and turn the light back on. Hopefully this is not a bad idea. The house is kept at 70 and the fireplace allows a little more heat, but even at that, the chicks dont sleep at the closest point to the fire as you would think. They settle in somewhat close but not as close as they could be, seems they know what is comfortable. We keep the water at the far side of the brooder so it stays cool.

    Over all we seem to have a happy flock, eating and drinking well. Our two RIR are the most bold and curious, one is constantly trying to figure out how to get out of the brooder to come visit us when we put her back in after she visits us. Love the little tail waggle before they launch into flight. We have a mesh screen covering the brooder which she hasnt yet figured out she cant fly through yet.
  3. ZestyRooster98

    ZestyRooster98 New Egg

    Mar 16, 2013
    Keep the lamp on all the time but I have kept my chicks at 80 to 90 degrees and they did fine.
  4. Moonkit

    Moonkit Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2011
    Richardson, Texas
    I raised my first chicks with an eco-glow brooder.. which only heats directly under it. The rest of the brooder was at the 73 or so degrees that the house was at.. they only spend the first day or so directly under the heat, as their bodies are learning to control their own temperature after being in the warm environment of the egg for a month. After that, they spent most of their time scampering around the brooder.... dumping the water, kicking the food out of the feeder, launching themselves off the top of the eco-glow...
    Hayshaker likes this.
  5. Hillschicks

    Hillschicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 17, 2012
    Week and a half, our chicks are no longer with a heat source... 70 degrees in the house... Waiting for 50+ degree outside weather and they are goin to their new coop

    This is our 5th batch of chicks.. We have had 0 chick deaths and only predator related adult deaths

    They are built to survive and they will.. They are much tougher than people think... Not to menton they feather out faster with less heat provided... Conversely they take much longer getting ready for the world with steady heat...

    Heat them all you want, but its not necessary... 100% chick survival in both spring and fall with our less is more way of doing things
    1 person likes this.
  6. ChicksWereDinos

    ChicksWereDinos Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 23, 2012
    I completely agree with the above. Chicks ARE tougher than we'd first think. I learned that after seeing my girls endure our harsh Rockies winters with no heat lamp just fine.

    Currently I have a batch of chicks outside. They range from maybe less than a week to a little older, some have feathering started. It's averaging in the 60's during the day and they bask in the sun and get nice and warm. I have them set up with a broody silkie. She alternates between pecking them and clucking at them, it's funny - I don't think she knows what to think of them. I'm fairly confident that she'll be looking after them soon enough. I slide all 8 chicks under her fluffy bum at night so they are all nice and warm when it dips into the 30's. A few of them already go under her and she seems to be OK with and doesn't chase off. Morning comes and they're running around eating bugs and doing their thing!

    (one of my girls and the chicks: 1 Buff Orpington, 1 Silver Laced Wyandotte, 1 Jersey Giant, 1 Cuckoo Maran, 1 California White, 3 Blue Laced Red Wyandottes (SR) ..... all breeds I've wanted for so long! Excited about Cali White since I had never even heard of them.
  7. ChicksWereDinos

    ChicksWereDinos Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 23, 2012
    oh I can't resist sharing also: we separately have a batch of week old babies from a silkie rooster and red frizzle momma. Only 3 made it but they're adorable, they look like black triplets. So far it looks like they're frizzes too! 1 is clear, the others feathers are just starting to pop in and they look like they're frilling out. So excited.

  8. CherishHolland

    CherishHolland Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2013
    Canyon Texas
    Gorgeous Chick!!! I keeping bugging dh to buy me some frizzles Darn chicken math![​IMG]
  9. pankakes

    pankakes New Egg

    May 20, 2013
    Well we have wellsummers an EEs and they're about 2 weeks. We've been setting them out in their run all day for the last couple of days at temps around 70+ and they seem just fine. They don't huddle up or cry they just run around pecking and scratching. They hate to go back in their brooder! I IR gunned them at about 75-80.

    When they're in and the light is on they'll all clump up around it like they're cold, but I IR gunned them and they're over 90 degrees. I think putting them out in the fresh air is better for em. They run around and work up their own heat!
  10. kortmom

    kortmom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 1, 2013
    I am a new chick mom and I felt like I was going to cook my chicks at 95 degrees so I went by their behavior rather than the temperature. Once they started spreading out and sleeping occasionally on the cool side I raised the lamp. I watched them very closely and they were quiet and content. I think they were around 85 for their first week (90 the first few days), and they were comfortable with 80 degrees the second week. I just raised the lamp up a little bit for their third week and will check the temp in a bit to see what it ended up going down to. If they were chirping loudly I would certainly have raised it and I still get up once during the night to check them.

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