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How and when should I move them outside?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Whitney13, Aug 4, 2011.

  1. Whitney13

    Whitney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 14, 2010
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    I have 18 week old bantam cochin babies and they currently live in a brooder in the dining room. I am in Arkansas and the weather has been very HOT this month. It was 114 on our porch yesterday but last night it got all the way down to 78. It is 106 today and it is only 2 in the afternoon. They have a brooder light in with them and they use it a lot. It is 78 in the house. When they do move out they will have to stay in the chicken house itself for a couple of months until they are big enough not to escape through the holes in the pen and it is a bit hotter in there but there is a ton of ventilation and I will be keeping a lot of cool water in there. The house is 12 x 12 and 12 tall. It has two windows that are both 3 x 12 and it has two vents at the roofline on the front and back. Also the door is just a frame with a 3 x 6 screen covered opening in the middle. So my question is when will the babies be old enough to handle this heat? How should I introduce them to this heat? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Whitney13

    Whitney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 14, 2010
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    anybody?
     
  3. atr04screw

    atr04screw Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 14, 2011
    They should be plenty old enough to go outside. I moves my 5 chicks to their coop at around 5 weeks and they were fine. I'm not sure how big 18 wk old bantams are, but mine weren't huge when I moved them out, probably 12" to the top of their head. As far as the heat, mine have been outside since I got them at around 1 week old and I kept them on my backporch with a heat lamp on. Its about the same temps here in GA that is in Arkansas, so they only needed the heat lamp till about 3-4 weeks old, and then they were fine without it. They have been dealing with the heat fine, I just make sure that I give them cold water every couple of hours and I have an old kitty litter pan in their coop with cold water in it and they stand in there to cool down.
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I think the OP has 18 chicks that are a week old. The syntax was a bit jumbled there. [​IMG][​IMG]

    I wouldn't put week old chicks out in weather of that heat level. 110? They'd die, pure and simple. I do not see how you can keep them cool enough at 110 degrees, frankly. I might try a back room that is warm, say 90, and provide no lamp for added heat. Middle ground between 77 degree A/C with heat lamp and outside with 100+.
     
  5. WalkingHorse

    WalkingHorse Out Of The Brooder

    This is an issue I am wrestling with as well. We are topping out at 105F + every day this week with high humidity. (E. Texas) We are about to finish our coop. My chickies are 4 weeks old. A mix of EE's, Polish, Campine, Cochin and a couple of Silkies. They have been living in their brooder located in my old barn office. I have been turning on the AC in there during the day due to the heat. I take them out early evening when it is still close to 100F in a little play care pen we set up. They immediately start panting, spreading their wings, dust bathing, etc. They're not in distress but to my untrained eye I think they are darn close.

    They are getting so big and really are ready (size-wise) to move to more roomy quarters. I am just so worried about the heat. [​IMG] Their coop/run is very shady and I have all kinds of fans I can set up. Could use some reassurance that it is okay to move them out of their climate controlled environment. [​IMG]
     
  6. Whitney13

    Whitney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 14, 2010
    Malvern, AR
    Oops, I meant 18 chicks that are one week old. [​IMG] It has been a long week.

    Thanks for the advice I have been given so far.

    I don't have a back room, it is filled with all our storage stuff. Maybe if I just start taking them out in the early mornings and late in the evenings for a little while they will be better adapted to the weather. I still don't know when I should move them out full time. Maybe 3-4 weeks old? Maybe then they will be big enough not to fit through the holes in the fence(2 inch chicken wire and damage from a flock of 10 sumatras) and I can let them out in the run during the hottest part of the day. I will start reenforcing the worst parts of the run with boards so they can't slip through.

    Walking Horse I'm not far from you, I am in West Arkansas and this weather lately has been horrible. I hope someone who has done this before can reassure both of us. [​IMG]
     
  7. TuckerWilliams

    TuckerWilliams New Egg

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    Aug 5, 2011
    I also am wondering if I can move my babies outside yet. Two weeks old; 103 with the heat index here in Georgia. Our laundry room is 87 degrees at 6:30pm, so I am leaving them there right now. If they have plenty of shade and water will they be ok outside?
     
  8. MEchickenfarmer33

    MEchickenfarmer33 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 29, 2011
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    sounds like their old enough [​IMG]
     
  9. suki'smom

    suki'smom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2011
    Central Wisconsin
    I would wait until they are 3-4 weeks old before moving them out, that way they aren't as fragile. As far as excessive heat I would set up a fan or two and keep fresh water at all times. As long as they are well hydrated they shouldn't have any problem. You could even add some electrolytes to their water.
     
  10. TuckerWilliams

    TuckerWilliams New Egg

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    Aug 5, 2011
    Thanks! I appreciate the advice.
     

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