Do I Need To Move The Heat Lamp Too

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by thisjed, Apr 3, 2017.

  1. thisjed

    thisjed Out Of The Brooder

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    Finally finished the coop, yahoo! I moved the chickens out and they've now spent 2 nights out there - with no heat lamp - lows have hovered around 42 to 45. The majority of the chickens are 7 weeks with some at 5 weeks too. There's a stretch of 3 nights coming up with lows around 31 to 33 - after that stretch, spring kicks in and lows should be 50 plus.

    I'm wondering if I need the heat lamp for the few nights in the low 30's??? Would hate to lose any chickens after getting this far...thx!
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2017
  2. chickenweirdo1

    chickenweirdo1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would put one in. 32 is a little cold for chicks.
     
  3. dheltzel

    dheltzel Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    I agree. Good insurance policy. Use a regular 60w or 100w bulb though, the high wattage heat lamps can pose a fire hazard, and they no longer need it to be 80 degrees. The main purpose if the smaller light is to give them a familiar "point source" of heat they will cluster around if cold. Their body heat will also warm each of other, as long as they have gathering point.
     
  4. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    Funny, no matter how many people you talk to you'll get a different opinion. My opinion is NOPE! They'll be fine! And I say that from experience. If they are out there without a lamp now, they are acclimating very well to both the temperatures and the natural day/night cycles. Putting a lamp out there now puts you and them back to square one.

    On April 1 four years ago, I evicted my 22 chicks to our still-unfinished coop at only 5.5 weeks old. I had to...it was them or me! I fretted and worried, but I had to get them out! I put a heat lamp and a wireless temperature transmitter out there, and I put the receiver on the nightstand by my bed. And then I watched as the temperature started dropping. All night long I was jumping out of bed, pulling my coat on over my jammies and shoving my feet into boots to run out there and check on them. The temp bottomed out at 18 degrees. They were fine. I was freezing! Every time I went out there, they were nowhere near the lamp. They were snuggled down in a pile of beaks and feathers right in front of the pop door. I went out in the morning almost expecting chick-cicles. Nope they were eating and drinking and running around in there like they'd been there all their lives.

    The second night it was the same story......although I only got out of bed to check them once. So the morning of the third day I took the heat lamp out. If they weren't going to use it, I wasn't risking a fire and running up my power bill. That night it snowed. And we didn't get our last snowfall of the year until June 6th. They not only survived, they thrived.

    Now I totally skip it all - the brooding indoors, the moving them out, the heat lamp...all of it. I brood outdoors in the run in a wire enclosure with a heating pad cave. That's it. And they are strong, calm, confident chicks totally comfortable with self-regulating their own comfort. They are off any heat source by 4 weeks and the brooder is disassembled and removed. We are in Northwestern Wyoming not too far from Yellowstone Park, so springtime chick season here is still pretty cold.
     
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  5. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    Nope. Those feather jackets are plenty. You can put one in if it makes you feel better but it's completely unnecessary.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2017
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  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    No heat lamp needed. They will do just fine from here on out. Good job on getting them out there! My babies are weaned off heat at 4 weeks old, and survive Maine springs outside just fine. As a matter of fact, they brood outside. I will keep them in my garage for a few days after hatch, just to be sure they are all healthy, then out they go with their heating pad brooder.
     
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  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Yes, you certainly get different opinions on about every topic on here, even from experienced people. We all have our experiences and reasons for our different opinions.

    I also brood outside so my chicks are acclimated. At different times I’ve had chicks just over 5 weeks old go through nights in the mid 20’s with no supplemental heat. Those chicks were in my grow-out coop that has great ventilation up high but at their level they had great breeze protection. I think the quality of your coop has to factor into this decision some. With a coop with decent ventilation but also good breeze protection where they are, I also think they will do fine in those temperatures.

    If you do decide to put a heat source out there, I urge you to be careful about fire. Anytime you use electricity there will be some risk of shock or fire, so be careful. If you use a lamp, heat lamp or regular incandescent lamp, wire it in place so you, the chickens, or anything else cannot possibly knock it down. Use wire, not string that can melt or burn.

    Putting a heat source out there will probably make you feel better, there is some value in that. Otherwise you’ll probably be worrying like Blooie did. While I don’t think your chicks need it, you might, so it might be worth doing.
     
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  8. thisjed

    thisjed Out Of The Brooder

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    I went a bit overboard on the coop, so it's definitely quality. It's about 6 foot tall (for someone standing inside anyways) and all the ventilation is up high. They haven't ventured up to the roost yet, so down on the floor there are zero drafts.

    I actually had my mind made up on not needing a lamp based on some other posts I found where several of you commented too. My aunt and mom are the two who panicked on me a bit and had me questioning myself again. I'm new to chickens.

    I'll stick with my initial conclusion - no lamp. The only downside is my mom lives next door, so she'll be calling and texting asking if I got the lamp hung, lol.
     
  9. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    My parents are much less likely to try something new and were pretty set on how they did things decades ago. It took many years of my chickens miraculously thriving for them to accept that perhaps nipple waterers aren't depriving them of water after all. [​IMG] They were shocked when I put baby chicks in a coop to brood. But, they're coming around now because they didn't think it was crazy that I had a heating pad cave this time.
     
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  10. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    At 7 weeks old they are fine without heat unless for some reason they are abnormally behind in feathering. My chicks are off of heat at 6 weeks and have been for a couple weeks already, with some nights in the 20s.
     
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