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heat lamps and my flock.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by fishnet1971, Dec 15, 2010.

  1. Here's the situation: I have a beautiful 10 X 12 coop (shed actaully) that my hubby and I built this spring, well insulated, sided, shingles, etc. my birds are this years babes and are spoiled rotten of course. I started to use a lightbulb when the daylight started to get short to keep them laying. As it got colder out, I had heared that light bothers them at night when they are trying to sleep, so i traded it for a red heat lamp hanging from the ceiling on one side. It keeps the coop around 45 - 50 inside. right now the wind chill here is -10 F. outside temp is 20 F. They seem to not mind the heat lamp, and have actually sat on the roost near it after they have come in from outside when it was a little warmer with no wind chill (30F). they have plenty of room to get closer or farther away from the heat lamp as they desire. Half of the coop is mostly dark and half has the red light.

    Question is: Will the light bulb hurt them? the red light? i dont have a problem with humidity in my coop either. I have a thermo. and a humid. in it, and they stay fine. they are so spoiled. I really dont mind the heat bulb, it has not made a difference in my electric bill by more than $5/month.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  2. chuckzoo

    chuckzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    The problem with keeping your coop that warm compared to ambient temperature is the temperature difference when they go outside - there is about a 20 degree difference which does not allow them to acclimate to the cold.
  3. abhaya

    abhaya Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 5, 2010
    cookeville, tn
    the big problem is if the power goes out and they have no heat thier bodies are not used to the cold and you could loose the entire flock!!
  4. So i should gradually start shutting the light off to let them get used to the cold. How cold is to cold for them? ie, at what temp should i have the lamp on for them?

    I grew up with chickens, and we never used a heat lamp, only a light on at night if it was really really cold. I think I am just more attached to them as pets now that i have them on my own. [​IMG]
  5. chuckzoo

    chuckzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    If you feel you need to heat your coop I would use a thermocube (run a search on this site for info and where to buy) it will maintain a set temperature in your coop.

    Please do take head of the warning about power outages and how you plan to deal with them if they occur. We rarely have them here in the south but I understand they are fairly common up north.

    I have a "night glo" reptile light in my coop that I bought at the pet shop that I turn on when it is very cold. It gives of a blue/purple light that does not disturb the chicken. It must be very secured fastened because it could be a fire hazard. I also have a plant germinating mat that is totally encased in rubber that I lean up against one side of the coop when temperatures really drop. It keeps the coop just a bit warmer than ambient temperature so that when they have to go outside there is not a vast difference in temperature.

    The reason I am heating is that I live in the south and we had a very warm Autumn (Fall) that turned very cold very suddenly and the chickens are not accostomed to the cold. I also have one BR hen that is molting and is almost naked and shivering and I can't stand to see her that way. Plus I only have 4 chickens and don't see a chance of loosing any if I can help it.

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