Help--need advice--baby chicks and afternoon heat!!!!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by lori9878, Aug 21, 2010.

  1. lori9878

    lori9878 New Egg

    Feb 19, 2010
    McDonald County, Missouri
    I've got 11 chicks that are 10 days old in a brooder in my garage. Today and yesterday, it's gotten entirely too hot. It's 98 outside, and the brooder thermometer is reading right around 100. I have been turning off the brooder light during the day, and yesterday I got worried and brought my chicks into the house (with a light on them) for a few hours until the sun set. The only suitable container I have to do this is really too small for them, and I worry that moving them in and out is almost as bad as the heat. What do I do? It's almost 4PM, and I don't think it will get very much hotter before it starts to cool off. Thank goodness it's supposed to cool off in the next couple of days......but what do I do in the meantime???

    They seem fine right now, but a few are holding their little wings out. Should I bring them in again?
  2. detali

    detali Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 9, 2009
    I live in Arizona and hot is the norm here most of the time. From my experience, leave them in the garage where you have them but turn off the brooder light. If they get cold at night they will just clump together. Make sure they have plenty of water available. And it's okay that they spread their little wings and even keep their beaks hanging open. It's their way of sweating.
  3. lori9878

    lori9878 New Egg

    Feb 19, 2010
    McDonald County, Missouri
    I just got back from checking them again, and it was 104 in the brooder--even without the heat light turned on! I got scared for them, so I gathered the chicks into my "emergency brooder" (a plastic tub) and brought them into the house.

    I'm thinking of asking my husband to move their big brooder to our front porch--it faces east and is much cooler this time of day than the garage, which faces west right into the afternoon sun. I just worry that there would be limited protection at night from predators out there.

    The question I need to know is: How hot is too hot for week-old chicks? I KNOW moving them around and putting them into a container that is too small for them is stressful on them--but how does it compare to 104-degree temps (give or take) for about 2-4 hours of the day?

    This is my second attempt at raising chicks, and I'm REALLY afraid of anything happening to them. My first bunch was lost to a predator back in June when they were a little over a month old [​IMG]. I probably should have waited til next year to try again--not when it's so hot, but then again, I had no idea this summer would be so much hotter than usual!!

    I appreciate the advice!
  4. Lesalynn

    Lesalynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 25, 2009
    Darnell, Louisiana
    It has been in the triple digits here in Louisiana for going on 3 months. I have been keeping my chicks outside in brooders, no light during the hot hours, only turning on the light when temp drops at nite. I'm not even using a heat lamp. Just a plain old 60watt bulb in a deflector lamp at nite. this last batch is only 6 days old, and this has been working great for them. I definitely make sure they have plenty of good clean cool water at all times. They have plenty of room to spread out when it gets a bit warm for them, that way they are not raising the heat level with body heat from each other.

    Good luck with yours.
  5. buildingmyark

    buildingmyark Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2010
    I keep my babies in a large clear plastic storage bin in our living room. I turn their lamp on if the temperature gets below 90. This works great for me. I can keep a close eye on them, knowing that they are comfortable at all times. It doesn't smell or make a mess. I'm in MS, so I can definitely relate about the heat (not to mention the humidity!)
  6. chickenguru

    chickenguru Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 24, 2010
    Kentwood La.
    I don't really know how to tell you to do it where you are at but I am in south Louisiana and the
    heat and humidity has been heck lately.
    Does your brooder have any ventilation? I had made my large brooder out of 2"x4"'s,plywood,
    and the bottom is 1/2" hardware cloth. I also have harware cloth on the sides in a few place to
    help ventilate.
    I have some chicks that are 6 weeks old now and when they were 2 weeks old the days and night were so
    warm and humid that I had to try something and turned the lights off completely. Sometimes in the
    middle of the night I would go out and turn only 1 light on.(Have 2 lights as this brooder is 8'x4'x3')
    But I see in your post without a light on it is 104? maybe you could place a fan to circulate some
    air through the brooder? It may not help a lot with the temp but maybe the moving air woul help
    them some. I had to do that myself some. I finally took all of this batch of chicks out of the brooder
    and already have them on the ground in their pen and run and they are loving it.
    Good Luck.
  7. buildingmyark

    buildingmyark Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2010
    I mean really, yall (especially you southerners)! Is this not the most hot and humid summer ever?!
  8. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    You can regulate the temperature of the brooder by placing gallon milk jugs filled with ice water around the edges. The reverse holds for when you may need to raise the temperature and there's a power failure - fill the jugs with hot water. You can create a micro-environment inside the brooder regardless of what the outside air temperature is.

    You're creating a heat exchange system with the water. It will mitigate the air temperature around the chicks.

    However, critical to this working to the chicks advantage, will be making sure you monitor the temperature with a thermometer.
  9. matimeo

    matimeo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 29, 2010
    I don't live in a really hot place, but temperatures lately have been in the high 90's and in my garage it gets over 100 by the afternoon. I moved them inside and they are now happily situated in the laundry room. I still have a light on them and it has been much easier to keep the temperature somewhat steady.
  10. Buttercup Chillin

    Buttercup Chillin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 27, 2008
    SouthEast TX
    In the summer, once I know the chicks are healthy they go outside (at about 7-10 days) its warm enough during the day and with a light at night they are fine.

    So what were you going to do with them when they feathered? They don't need their feathers to keep them warm in the summer like they do in the spring. That is the only reason to keep them inside, to keep them warm. If the temperatures are warm, there is no reason to keep them in the house. Move them outside where they can get some air just make sure its shaded and they have plenty of cool water in the afternoon. Light at night, I do put a thermometer with them, so I know what wattage to use.

    Remember they hatched at 100 degrees, chicks handle heat better than chickens. Actually the sooner you get them outside when the temps are high, the better. They don't have to make so many temperature adjustments. Protect them from rain, though.

    I am hatching baby quail now, once they are settled, at about day 5-6, out they go. Provided its not raining. They don't have a brooder house to go to, just a lighted cage. Our heat index has been well over 100 for weeks. I have 6 week old chicks outside that have been there for 5 weeks. Their fine, growing like little weeds.

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