Do Mom and chicks need supplemental heat?


In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 30, 2012
My 1 1/2 year old black Orpington hen, Betty, is raising three chicks. They are a week old as of 4/28. I have them out in the porch without supplemental heat (a heat lamp). The problem is, is that we are having a cold, wet spring. The porch gets some heat from the house and stays about 60-68 degrees. Warmer when the sun is shining (which is rare lately). There are no drafts. My question is: Are they warm enough? The chicks spend a lot of time under Momma, and emerge every hour to eat and drink and run around a little. Should I be giving them supplemental heat or is the natural heat that Momma is providing good enough? I don't want to endanger my little babies! Help! :)


Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
Southeast Louisiana
If you were having temperatures below freezing so the water was ice and such you might need to do something to keep water and food available to them, but at those temperatures and much lower, Mama can handle it.


Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
southern Ohio
I agree with Ridgerunner. I was wondering why you haven't put them back in your coop with your other chickens now that they have bonded with their momma. it is so much easier to have her showing them around the normal coop, run, and foraging areas. Sometimes broodies will up and decide that it is time to leave the chicks, and while normally they will wait until 5-7 weeks, I have seen a couple do it at 2 or 3 weeks. The chicks did okay because their broody had already taught them what to do to find food water, shelter, and the big chickens had accepted them.

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