Heat lamp thoughts!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ashrich6, Jan 2, 2016.

  1. ashrich6

    ashrich6 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 13, 2014
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    Last year they were fine in the cold. They have a large run and the coop goes into a shed we just build. They also can go in the shed if the wind is bad. They seem to be fine so far. When I laid down hay today they seemed very happy to scatch and play with it. Ill post a picture tomorrow so you all can see.

    Thanks everyone for their input!

    I guess chickens have lived on this earth for a long long time, even before heat lamps!
     
  2. jimbob86

    jimbob86 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote: I would surmise that chickens will outlast heat lamps ..... they are adaptable, self healing and self replacing ...... and efficient ....... heat lamps? Not so much.
     
  3. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

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    To the OP: you instinctively did the right thing by hanging the heat lamp outside the coop in the run to be available for any of your birds that are molting and are in need of a warm up. That way, you aren't disrupting their ability to acclimate to the cold, but they still have the option of supplementing their body heat when they feel the need.

    Just make certain the heat lamp is secured by two different means that are not flammable so the lamp can't fall and there aren't any other flammable materials within range.
     
  4. ashrich6

    ashrich6 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 13, 2014
    Salt Lake City, Utah
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    We are in the middle of finishing the coop/shed. The lamp isn't as close to their coop as it looks. Today I picked up the hen who is molting the most to make sure her bare skin isn't freezing and she is super warm!!! They seem happy and loving the hay
     
  5. ECBW

    ECBW Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Save your money and turn off the heat.

    I used to use light for egg production. I decided to let them winter naturally this year. So everyone stopped laying, the fat barred rock, Orpington, Australop, except the skinniest bird.... The Leghorn, true to its reputation!
     
  6. bonniethesilkie

    bonniethesilkie New Egg

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    I started using a ceramic heat bulb, the kind for reptile tanks. Regular heat bulbs aren't meant for use longer than 30 minutes. The only reason I'm using heat is because I lost a 7 month old silkie to our 20 degree nighttime lows. Normally, adding heat isn't recommended. Their combined body heat keeps them warm enough...
     
  7. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    I don't use heat period. Well, that's not completely true as I do incubate and brood chicks so do have an electric bill in spring.

    North East Kingdom of Vermont. That's climate zone 3, forget if a or b is the colder one but on the colder side of zone 3. This winter has been unusually balmy with snow melting as fast as we get it. Lowest so far has been single digits below 0F at night and single digit high days- last few have been sunny and low 30's F. Regardless, I do the same each year for winter- make a wind shield on two side to block prevailing Northern winds. Done with the heated water. Been using the rubber livestock bowls as I'm home most days and even if not the birds are trained to drink in morning and I make sure to get home in time to give water before roosting. May figure out a heated bucket with nipples in the future.



    They heard the side shed door open and know I'm likely bringing some sunflower seed or mix cracked corn and sunflower in afternoon pre roost. Read this post so went out to take these photos. 10 minutes ago, 31F and still sunny. Gave them pre roost treat early to grab these pics and post.

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    To right you see the lean-to I put up as temporary winter shelter- reused tin and $40 worth of pressure treated 2x4 as I'll reuse it later.

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    The path I shoveled out to and under favorite bush. There is hay under there but not quite enough sun to melt the thin layer of snow left on it.

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    A look at their severe day shelter area- it's basically one large well aired coop. Tarp on one side and the lean-to just over the coop I move about in better weather. The two post were sunk a foot in and I used three wooden stakes on ground end to hold it from wanting to tip/slide forward prior to putting on the three sheets of tin.

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    Yeah, snow on the nest box lid as they never laid prior to the solstice. Hopefully I'll be brushing off that snow to collect by February....

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    Heat coops if you want. Keep birds locked in coops if you want. Just sayin' the birds prefer to be outside. That in corner past hanging feeder is a old wash tub with wood ash in it for bathing. Black box near nest end is a tamper proof bait box with chunx poison bait in it.

    Just how I do it and some food for thought[​IMG]

    Edit: Non snow months it's just the coop dragged about with ridding lawn mower and portable 165' electric poultry netting. Lucked out with this fenced in area. The owners used to have two collies so this area is the old kennel.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  8. jimbob86

    jimbob86 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote: I would not turn off the heat now if they have not acclimated to the cold gradually- they can't put on down jackets overnight!
     
  9. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    Exactly. That's why a bunch of birds died last year or year before with ice storm on east coast. Wasn't what I'd consider cold climate either, I'm thinking Carolina's (could be wrong) was the region and that ain't cold. Folks used heat and birds were not used to cold that was suddenly forced on them with area wide black out for days on end. Birds die from coop fires and power outages with heated coops. I took pic's of my chickens earlier but could easily have taken photos of the wild turkeys that come by every day and roost in trees at night. Or pictures of the tundra birds that fly south to winter here in Northern VT or the finches, chickadee, blue jay that abound without the kind of shelter my birds get. Yup, I pamper my birds but eventually they will reward me with an egg. Fingers crossed it will happen in February!

    Just like acclimating chicks from brooder to outside you stage down the heat. In the case of heat in coop I'd use a timer and lessen an hour a day. Unless it's kept on for 24 hours now then take a big chuck out of it to start like noon to four for two days then two hours a day until gone.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2016
  10. jimbob86

    jimbob86 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 7, 2015
    Nebraska
    My Coop
    It was 2 below zero this AM here...... no heat lamp, and my chickens were fine ..... hungry as usual.
     

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