How long do I need heat for meat chicks?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by shadowfox, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. shadowfox

    shadowfox Songster

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    My first batch of chicks, all hens for eggs, I raised indoors using the mamma heating pad method. They stayed in the house for 8 weeks. I'd like to raise meat birds, probably about 2 dozen, but I don't want to keep them in the house for 8 weeks. That's practically butcher time! And I don't have enough space. How long do CX chicks need to be under a heat lamp or heating pad? I'm thinking I'll raise them over the spring or summer when it warms up, that way I don't have to worry about heat quite as much. I currently don't have access to electricity outside, so that may be an issue.
     
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  2. penny1960

    penny1960 Going back to La La Land

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    No worry about 2 dozen where you are should be fine they will huddle will they have any protection in a building or coop
     
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  3. ChickNanny13

    ChickNanny13 Crossing the Road

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    Thank you for having your location in your profile, saves from having to ask where you're located. It does get winding & chilly in NM but since you're using the MHP, one week in the house for observation then put them out in their coop. I used to raise in the house for 4wks :sick not anymore. Now I raise in a plastic bin with MHP in the house, potty pads floor covering for observation. Then they go outside with their MHP into the brooder I have in the patio until they're 8 - 12wks, then out to the Chicken House.

    From what I've read, when fully feathered they can be integrated into the flock or coop.
     
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  4. Morrigan

    Morrigan Free Ranging

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    I put mine straight in an outdoor shed with a heat light (at night) for the first week or so depending on weather. By day 10, I like to have them outside during the day, and back in the shed with no heat at night unless it is unseasonably cold (less than 50 degrees).

    I tried a huddle box with no heat last year, as we were in a heat wave (highs in the 90s and lows around 55-60) when the chicks arrived, but a couple didn't make it inside the box at night and I found them dead/dying the morning, so that was a one and done experiment.

    That said, they are very hardy birds that run hot, so you can turn off the heat much earlier then you think.
     
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  5. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Free Ranging

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    I got 15, and found they were a hot bird, and grow at an incredible rate. Mine were in the coop in a week with a wooly hens, and did fine. I got mine in the early spring, as I wanted to butcher before the flies were out.

    I think heat would be more of a problem than cold. Our temperatures were around freezing at night, 50 during the days.

    Mrs K
     
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  6. ourltlflock

    ourltlflock Songster

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    After 10 days to 2 weeks they don't really need a heat lamp. I had a 3 sided shelter for mine with deep straw, they were fine. In Las Vegas.
     
  7. 123RedBeard

    123RedBeard Crowing

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    Which state?

    What month?

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    OP,

    As mentioned above ... too high a heat is a problem ... depending on where you live in NM ... there are drastic temperature differences ... under 80 would be ideal.
     
  8. ourltlflock

    ourltlflock Songster

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    In Nevada. I do fall chicks in october/November. Or spring chicks going outside by March first, or the week after.
     

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