i hate to do this to yall BUT:

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by mickeymousears, Sep 7, 2011.

  1. mickeymousears

    mickeymousears Songster

    Apr 29, 2011
    SLO; CA
    Its really hot here today- I'd guess the hottest day all year so far. My red chicken keeps coming in the cool house panting with her wings spread and everyone else is hunkered down somewhere shady. Is there something I can do to cool them off? The ducks have a pool but idk what to do with water fearing chickens.

    Here's where I have to apologize: I don't think I need to worry about over heating- I'm guessing its around 90 outside (I know the rest of the country is triple digits- I'm SO sorry!!) but she is panting so maybe I do need to worry?? What do you think?
    It very rarely gets over 90 here- houses don't even have air conditioning. So I'm guessing she just isn't use to this weather?
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    I think she'll be fine. Chickens spread their wings, seek shady spots and pant when hot. What triple digits? It's a rainy, damp 60 degrees here. [​IMG]
  3. mickeymousears

    mickeymousears Songster

    Apr 29, 2011
    SLO; CA
    Oh LOL then I take back the apology! [​IMG] Our news likes to constantly remind us how nice we have it weather wise I guess- perhaps by exaggerating the truth hmmmmm .

    So she is just being dramatic? As usual!
  4. jjthink

    jjthink Crowing

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    Like us, birds vary in their tolerances. Make sure she has plenty of cold water, plenty of shade, access to moving air (fan), cold treats like watermelon, electrolytes if panting a lot (you can in a pinch spritz Pedialtye or gatorade onto some watermelon or other food that she likes)... You can make some nice shallow puddles in the shade so she can get her feet wet if she chooses (this will cool her) - a running hose lying on the ground can be fascinating for them.....
  5. corgiscatsandchickens

    corgiscatsandchickens Chirping

    Jun 3, 2011
    I don't think she's being all that dramatic--just like a dog pants when it gets hot, chickens pant and spread thier wings. That said, I got a kiddie pool for our girls and they love it. They don't swim in it, but they do like to go wading to cool off. I have to believe that in the wild, jungle fowl would take advantage of cool streams and pools to cool off, so I don't really think it's unnatural for chickens. Took our girls about half a day to get used to it, now when it gets hot, you can't keep them out of it! Must stress that these are older chickens 16 weeks +, I would never advise letting young chicks get wet. Hope this helps!
  6. Wading pans. You can make them out of anything that holds a few inches of water. A big dog bowl, baking pans, trash can lids. Also, blocks or bags of ice. Can you run an extension cord and put a fan out there? Do they have shade? A small mister can really help but the water pans are even better because they cool turlough their feet.
    When I have a bird that appears diffracts I will give her a cool bath and unless they are really wild, they always seem to appreciate it. Had a Cornish that looked like she was going to die recently from heat and she fully recovered with a good bath.
    Around AZ, people lose a lot of chickens on hot days. Temps above 100 are dangerous and need to be treated with special precautions. Chickens in distress often recover if cooled off quickly, brought indoors or put in a cooler place.
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2011
  7. kitkatnoah

    kitkatnoah Chirping

    Sep 26, 2010
    Houston, Texas
    Quote:X2 We're in south Texas and we had temps over 100 degrees for 3 months straight and are currently in a drought. My flock lays in shady areas, we dug a shallow hole & lined it with a bowl, filled with water; when they get hot, they'll stand in the water to cool off. If it's real hot we'll take a mister and spray water under their wings, which they seem to enjoy. [​IMG]
  8. gerryhouser

    gerryhouser In the Brooder

    Aug 11, 2011
    A few years back I built a misting bar about 8 feet long with 6 misters. The birds liked it. I would run it about 2 hours a day when the temps were above 100 degrees. Ran it off my rainwater recovery system. This year I tilled to depth of 6 inches a stretch of ground that is well shaded and rarely gets rain. I than covered the ground with chopped wheat straw. How on hot days the chickens will dig a shallow hole in the ground and sit out the heat of the day. We're not seeing the same reduction in egg production on hot days we have seen in the last few years. I think that means the birds are happy.
  9. mickeymousears

    mickeymousears Songster

    Apr 29, 2011
    SLO; CA
    I think she had sympathy pregnancy pains (over heating) for me [​IMG]. Thank you for all your suggestions! We have a shallow tub I use as a waterer -altho the ducks destroy the clean water within seconds. Eventually I washed her down in the sink and plopped her in front of the fan in the livingroom- she was not happy about it and made sure she followed me around complaining afterwards. The other animals weren't panting and it only got to low 90s with a cool breeze

    This is my first experience with chickens. But when parrots pant like that its not good- that's why I was so worried about her. So it sounds like its not such a big deal with chickens panting?? She came inside to sit on my lap and made my legs sweat so she definitely was hot - but how much heat can they take??

    I feel so bad for you all in the middle of the country- that's why I feel pretty sheepish posting about our "heat wave". I'm well aware we have NOTHING to complain about weather wise!! I've been to Texas in the summer- that's some serious business!!!
  10. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Songster

    Jul 22, 2010
    Anderson, Texas
    I'm here in Texas & wow what a summer we had no rain & super hot. I hauled more water than you could imagine. One thing that really helped my birds was I added ice to their water.

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