Infrared light or heat emitter

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Broodica, Nov 1, 2010.

  1. Broodica

    Broodica Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    I have searched on the site and I realize there are a number of different opinions on to heat or not to heat the coops, but I am still left with a few questions.

    I just put my 9 week old girls in the coop yesterday. They have been in the house since they were a day old. It was sunny yesterday and about 55F, so I thought it was a good time for the big move. It's getting down into the low 40's at night. I was afraid of the sudden temperature change for them. They seemed just fine during the day pecking around outside, but at night I was concerned about the cold. I put their old 250w infrared brooder light in the coop to keep the chill off, but it lights the coop up like it's Christmas! They were sleeping in the dark here in the house. I have about 5 inches of wood shavings on the floor. There is ventilation over the door and lower to the floor on either side of the coop. We will probably close the lower ones off when it starts getting colder.

    Can they sleep with that red light on in the coop? I went to check on them before bed and they were wide awake still and not going up on their roost.

    Should I switch to a ceramic heat emitter and put in a night light?

    Should I just leave them and let them get used to the colder temps and natural light cycle?

    They are too young to be laying yet, but when should I start the 14 hours of daylight thing?

    They were pretty pitiful last evening when I shut the door for the night. But then they would cry when we left them for the night in the house as well. I know, I know.....spoiled rotten, but we are newbies to this. Our ducks are happy as clams with no heat and a night light on in their house, but then they are happy hanging out all day in the rain too.

    I know chickens don't like to get wet, so we have sheets of that wavy plexiglass stuff over the top of their part of the run. It's pouring today, so it will be interesting to see if they even want to come out.

    Since it is our first "chickens in the coop" experience, any advice you can give would be GREATLY appreciated. Having them in the house was easy until they started flying around!

  2. Carrie Lynn

    Carrie Lynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2010
    S.E. Michigan
    LOL, I have a Bantam Leghorn that screams when I leave her sometimes. It sounds like she's been attacked!

    Re: Your birds, I'm sure they're looking a bit miserable because they'd rather be house chickens. I put mine out during the day to harden them off and into a crate in the garage at night. They acclimated and seem okay, but these past nights have been cold. I'm having difficulty getting my coop finished on my own :-(

    After doing a lot of reading and posting, I've decided not to use additional heat in my very small coop. I will insulate and buy a ceramic heat emitter just in case it gets way, way cold. but, I will not use it during usual winter weather. I'd rather my birds acclimate naturally. I've read they will be more robust that way. Good Luck!
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  3. Broodica

    Broodica Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    They seem very happy right now. So happy that they knocked over their waterer somehow and I just had to muck out the wet bedding and replace it! They keep poking their noses out into the rain....hmmmmmm.....what is the wet stuff? Meanwhile the ducks are happily sitting in their pool while it's pouring!

    I'm mostly concerned if they can sleep at night with the giant red Christmas bulb hanging from the ceiling. It's not a permanent fixture, just until they have gotten used to being outside or if it drops below freezing, which doesn't happen here that often. I don't want sleepy, sick chickens!

    They have always whimpered when it's lights out. They sound like kittens......and I am sure they would be thrilled to remain house chickens, but I would go INSANE!

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