Questions: I have 4 birds around 9 weeks old in a brooding box in the garage. We are worried about them. We have never raised birds this late in the season and under these conditions. We recieved them from the hatchery in September. Their behavior in this cold weather is troublesome. Weather permitting, we generally leave the garage door open to let in sunlight and fresh air. The heat lamp is on mostly at night and sometimes during the day if it is really cold out. More so now as the weather is really getting cold. The birds are pretty much fully feathered but not quite. They all appear darker in color than my other birds were at that age and are not as active. They huddle most of the day! They are of the blue orpington breed. With these dark and cloudy days, they are not getting much sunlight. Hence the darker colors? It is almost time to put them in the coop age wise but they dont seem ready and dont look big enough to handle that. Not positive but they appear to be smaller than my previous group at this age. Do you think the weather and lack of sunlight is playing on this issue? They are eating and drinking well. I may have taken a chance by getting them late in the season.