How cold can adolescent chicks safely overnight?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MTchick, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. MTchick

    MTchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 2, 2007
    Western Montana
    My chicks are 6 weeks, 5 weeks, and 4 weeks old, and had to I move them into their coop today because they got far to crazy and stinky in the spare bedroom. They are all well feathered, although the two 4 week old are still kinda patchy in a few spots. It is going to be pretty cold for the next week (month, really) at night- lows as low as 25 degrees. I have a warming light, lots of pine shavings, lots of food, and the coop is quite snug.

    So my question is- how cold can adolescent chicks safely overnight? I plan to put a thermometer in there later today so I can monitor their temperature, and if it seems too cold I could run a second warming light in there, or perhaps add some straw or even an old blanket to snuggle in. What is the interior coop temperature that I should start to worry about- 40? 70? I really have no idea what a young, but well feathered, hen can handle.

    Thanks

    -MTchick
     
  2. mudhen

    mudhen confidently clueless

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    I would venture a guess that as long as you have that warming light and the space is draft free, they should be OK. But I defer to the wiser and more experienced member of this forum... [​IMG]
     
  3. jimnjay

    jimnjay Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 11, 2007
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    4 weeks if pretty young to be put out. How many do you have and have they all been together all along? If you have more than 10 who all get along well they will snuggle up and probably be ok, I would have at least 100 watts in the light. I have sixl 6 week olds that just got moved as well and it is going to be very cold tonight. Heck, its been very cold and windy today. I hope they will all be ok.
     
  4. MTchick

    MTchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are a total of eight, and they get along really well. The two 4 week olds are pretty spunky and often sleep snuggled up against the bigger chicks- the bigger ones don't seem to mind or peck at them. They have all been together, all the time, since I got them from the feedstore in March.

    I just checked on them (it is 50 and windy outside right now) and they were mostly dozing under the light. Not clumped up- spread out- but under the light, sleepy. One of the 4 weekers was awake and eating. So far so good.

    Oh, by the way, they are all standard size breed chicks.

    -MTchick
     
  5. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Here is what happened when I had to put 23 3 week old chicks out in their nursery coop. It had very high 9 ft. ceilings (was half of a storage shed) with ventilation at the top that could not be closed off on the side opposite from where the chicks were. It was double walled for insulative value, no open windows. I had a 250 watt heat lamp, plus a 125 watt heat lamp and they still cheeped like they were freezing when the temps dipped into the lower 20's outside. Eventually, I ended up putting a sort of plywood ceiling over them to hold down the heat and that helped alot. They had very deep pine shavings under their feet and each other for warmth, but there were some very cold nights. When the next batch comes along next week, that bunch will have to out to the nursery earlier than that, but by then, the nights will be much, much warmer than they were when my now almost 11-wk-olds went out.
     
  6. EggMan

    EggMan Out Of The Brooder

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    I just put my 5 week olds out yesterday and they are doing just fine. It went down to 30 last night but with 2-250 watt heatlamps and a small milkhouse heater they were snug as a bug in a rug. I use ground corn cobs for bedding and their coop is 8 X 14 with 7 foot ceilings. They are all heavy breeds. When I checked them this morning it was 65 degree's. When I went in they all came running looking for there treats. They are definitely happy chicks.[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  7. MTchick

    MTchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is good to hear. I put my dog's synthetic sleeping bag (yes, I know that is pretty funny unto itself) in the coop for them to snuggle into for extra warmth, and that made me feel better about them sleeping nice and cozy. I think they should be fine. The temperature around the lamp in there is staying a pretty steady 65 and they are eating, active, and their usual chirpy but quiet selves.

    I guess I'll check on them once or twice more and then try not to think about it all night! Might be hard to sleep thinking about the little chicks in there all alone for the first time. I hope they are not scared of the different outdoors noises or anything. This must be what my mother felt like the first time I went to sleep-away camp when I was a little girl. [​IMG]

    -MTchick
     
  8. Lunachick

    Lunachick Chicken Slave

    Mar 19, 2007
    Brick, NJ
    Yikes! I just looked out my window, and it's snowing! WHERE IS SPRING???
     
  9. MTchick

    MTchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It got down to about 24 degrees last night. This morning I put on a jacket, walked through the frosty grass, and held my breath as I opened the door to check on them. Everyone was happily walking around, sitting, preening, etc. No signs of distress at all. There was still ample food in the feeder and it was about 55 degrees in there.

    Perfect!! I'm so proud of my little chicks and their first big night out. Thanks for the encouragement.

    It is supposed to snow all week, which is actually normal for a Montana spring in April. I'm glad I built the coop to be practically air-tight when the vents are closed!

    -MTchick
     

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