First Timer: Chicks and brooder temp issues..

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by BFFritz, Apr 4, 2009.

  1. BFFritz

    BFFritz New Egg

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    Apr 4, 2009
    I read plenty on here before getting my chicks that during the first week the chicks need temps of 90-95 deg. My chicks seem much more sensitive to the temperature, at around 87 they act like they are much too warm, and I've turned the heat lamp off all-together and waited a bit, when I checked on them (after maybe 20 minutes or so) they seem perfectly comfortable with the brooder much closer to room temp (roughly 78-80) but after everything i've read, that does not seem normal.. Why would that be?
     
  2. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    What do you have them in, how many, and how big is it? Make sure you have enough room so that they can get away from the heat if they're too warm. I use a 250 watt red heat lamp bulb and I hang it about 18 inches above their floor in the center so they can go to the ends if they are too warm. Should have it 90-95 for the first week and drop it 5 degrees each week. How old and what kind are they?
     
  3. BFFritz

    BFFritz New Egg

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    Apr 4, 2009
    There is plenty of room for them to get out of the heat, I am using the same type (watt and color) bulb, and its probably more like 21 inches above.

    I've got 10, 5 production reds and 5 barred rocks. About 4 days old. I am keeping them in one of those plastic blue storage containers, a large one, like 35 gallon or something I believe.
     
  4. LilRalphieRoosmama

    LilRalphieRoosmama Officially Quacked

    Oct 15, 2007
    Elyria, OH
    You're using exactly what I use - tub and all. I'd go with your instincts then. You can tell by watching them if they're too hot or cold. From what I've noticed, if they are cold they'll huddle together. Too hot and they'll just lay there away from each other. Just right and they are up walking, eating & pooping. Do what you think is right. I have heard anywhere from 85-95 is good so don't panic.
     
  5. finnleyjo

    finnleyjo Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 1, 2009
    I haven't been checking the actual temp on my brooder with a thermometer. I just keep an eye on the chicks on how the chicks are doing and if they seem too cool or too hot.

    I would just follow your instincts.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2009
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    My chicks never liked 90 - 95 degree rule either.
    Just watch your chicks. Too cold and they're huddling close together under the heat source, usually peeping loudly.
    Too hot and they're trying to get away from the heat, spread out and sometimes holding their itty bitty wings out and panting.
     
  7. BFFritz

    BFFritz New Egg

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    Apr 4, 2009
    Thanks everyone.

    I am keeping an eye on them regularly. Im only basing how comfortable they seem to be on those signs, I know when they get hot because they obviously avoid the main light, they get lined up along the sides, havent seen any panting or wing stretching.. But I think I've been controlling it well. They normally like to cuddle a little bit when they sleep right? Not on top of each other or anything, but touching a bit.
     
  8. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Quote:Yep, that's normal.
     
  9. cgmccary

    cgmccary Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I never really understood the 90-95 F rule. I have always kept a 100W incandescent bulb in one of those reflectors in my brooders and that has always been enough. Anything else was too hot. I lower the wattage after about 5-6 weeks to 60W then 40W. The room temperature is my basement temp (55-60F) so they can move to a cooler spot if they want to get out of the heat.

    It was in the upper 30s here this morning, and I noticed my mama hen had her 5 two day olds running around in the cold & not a bother in the world (she's a Bantam hen, and they are all large fowl chicks as well, so 5 is about the max she can cover) -- they are all healthy and thriving-- they are tougher than you think!

    I put out 40 - 4 week old chicks in the outside "juvenile pen" yesterday and today (it was in the upper 60s yesterday and upper 70s today) and they were very active. The sunshine and fresh air are good for them.
     
  10. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    Both my batches of chicks also did not tolerate as high a temp as is recommended. I also think you are wise to decide according to their behavior.
     

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