Heat questions for new chicks...


12 Years
Jun 11, 2007
My 25 chicks are supposed to be mailed out this week. I have a 44" x 44" box setup with 15" sides and bedding in my garage. about 2/3 of it is covered with a hinged top and the rest has an old screen over it. I have a 250 watt heat lamp over the screened part in a draft free 40 degree (night) and 50 degree (day) garage

The hatchery says to keep the heat 24-28" off the chicks backs. Well, if I raise the lamp that high, the temp right under the lamp gets to only 80 degrees. So, I lowered the lamp to 16" and got it to 95 degrees. Any problems with that? Not sure why they say 24-28"?? And, right under the lamp its the target temp, but the rest of the box is kind of cool. Is this ok?

The other thing I'm wondering is if the temp goes down 10-15 degrees at night, should I be lowering the light a bit at night to makeup for it? I was thinking of running a 100 watt bult on a seperate area of the pen just at night to makeup the difference.

Any ideas or suggestions are appreciated!


Squeaky Wheel
11 Years
Feb 11, 2008
Waterloo, Nebraska
I would lower the light to increase the heat, and add a second light with a smaller bulb to supplement at night. Only turn the second one on in the evening when temps are getting cooler.


12 Years
May 7, 2007
fingerlakes, ny
Yeah, I found it impossible to keep the lamp that far up. In fact, I had to take my screen away and lower the lamp to like eight inches to get it warm enough.

I found that the surrounding temp doesn't make that much difference underneath the heat lamp. But that first night you might want to get up in the middle of the night and check. I know I did!

I always have a supplemental light going -- a white one -- in case the other one burns out.

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