1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Feather faster if I take away heat sooner?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by matimeo, Sep 7, 2010.

  1. matimeo

    matimeo Chillin' With My Peeps

    259
    1
    111
    Jul 29, 2010
    Oregon
    I searched for this in the forums, but didn't find much, so I'll post the question. If I keep my chicks in a cooler environment (not too cool, but on the cooler side for their age), will they feather faster? It makes sense logically, but anybody have any experience, or data to show this? I've had my heat lamp pretty much in the same spot for the last few weeks, showing it about 90 degrees directly under the lamp. Chicks are all between three and five weeks. They still were laying down directly under the light and didn't seem too warm. I raised it about 18 inches and they still seem ok. I'm wondering if it will speed up feathers, cause I want them out of the laundry room.

    As always, thanks!
     
  2. Matt A NC

    Matt A NC Overrun With Chickens

    3,081
    53
    269
    Feb 22, 2007
    Morganton, NC
    When I start taking chicks outside they do seem to start feathering out faster. I have had brooder chicks that took forever to feather when it was too cold for them to go out. Those that do get to go out also seem to grow faster and put on some extra weight.

    Matt
     
  3. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I think it does. I've never kept my brooder temps as warm as some people recommend.
     
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    30,359
    148
    446
    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    I don't really think it makes much difference... but I'm in AZ and it's almost always hot.
     
  5. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,168
    26
    201
    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    The short answer is "yes". I've noticed that the chicks raised the natural way--by a hen--feather and mature faster than those coddled under a heat lamp. When we brood them we tend to keep them warmer, longer than they need to be.
     
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    28,907
    113
    408
    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Quote:I agree. I brood chicks outside and they are all pretty much feathered out by 4 weeks or so.
     
  7. FarmGirl01

    FarmGirl01 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2008
    AR
    Gotta agree on the others. Mine are always on the cool end. They do great.[​IMG]
     
  8. Broodica

    Broodica Chillin' With My Peeps

    191
    0
    99
    Aug 20, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    My 4 chicks are only 9 days old, but I have only taken them outside once when we had ONE day where it finally made it over 70F! Last few days it's barely made it to 60F and it's raining on and off. I hate the thought that they aren't able to enjoy the outside. I was figuring on some nice weather before it got like this. [​IMG] One managed to get out yesterday...those little wings are feathering out fast! Heard someone peeping lamentably and found her standing next to the brooder.

    I am guessing it's too cold to take them out?
     
  9. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    I brood inside, but try to keep my temps down a bit from recommended (because I'd rather have cuddling chicks than panting dehydrated ones), and I see the same thing -- pretty much full feathering at 4 weeks.
     
  10. matimeo

    matimeo Chillin' With My Peeps

    259
    1
    111
    Jul 29, 2010
    Oregon
    Thanks for the feedback everyone. My five week old still doesn't have a ton of feathers, so maybe I've kept it too warm. I'll think I'll dramatically drop the temps and just keep an eye on them to make sure they aren't getting too cold.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by