Light wattage for the coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by brooster, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. brooster

    brooster Songster

    Jun 14, 2007
    northwest Ohio
    I have been using a 25 watt bulb to save energy, it blew this morning so i replaced it with a 60 watt. There is so much more light, i can auctually see what i am doing. Will the chickens mind the brighter light? The light is on till about 11:30 12:00 and comes on at 6:00. What wattage do you all use?
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I don't supplement any light, but if you want more output for lower wattage to save money, use a florescent light bulb if they don't need the heat. 15W florescent will be about as bright as the 60.
  3. bills

    bills Songster

    Jan 4, 2008
    vancouver island
    I wondered about using the new socket type florescent bulbs as well for the energy savings, but questioned whether or not the light spectrum was correct for chickens. I read that chickens thrive best in the red/yellow light spectrums, which incandescent bulbs give off, wheras I don't know if they have the socket type florescent bulbs out yet that offer that spectrum.

    Anybody else that can fill me in here?

    I wondered too, about broosters method of having the lights go out well after dark. At this time of year I thought the ideal method was to have the light come on early morning, very early (3 am) if your wanting to give laying birds the needed light, and then allowing dusk to come naturally so the chickens hit the roosts. I gathered that with the coop lights going out all of a sudden when it's pitch black out, many of the birds may still be on the floor, eating or scratching, and are suddenly stranded in the dark, rather than being on the roosts. I suppose if one was using the floor method, this would not be so crucial.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong, as I am a newbie to this, but this is what I had learned in my study of the subject.
  4. Charlie Chicken

    Charlie Chicken Songster

    Dec 24, 2007
    Phippsburg, ME
    There have been many complicated scientific studies done with lighting to stimulate egg production and it has been shown that generally, both incandescent and florescent lighting can be used.

    The theory that lights should be used in the morning and allowing dusk to come naturally is 100 percent correct. Placing the birds in total darkness at night when the lights go out isn't a good way to go. Yes, some of them will already be on the roost and yes, most will somehow find their way to the roost after the lights go out but why put them in that difficult situation? Lights on early and off before dust just makes things easy for everyone.
  5. Flufnstuffs~FluffySilkies

    Flufnstuffs~FluffySilkies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    I use YELLOW out door bug lights.
    They come in 40 - 60 - 100 watt sizes
    You use the size you need for the size of your coop or pen
    Our coops are knid of dark inside. The mini barn only has one small window and the big out front coop has 5 windows BUT it is an old dark building and I have a 100 watt bulb in there. I notice when I have the light on they are more active.
    when I don't have it on an go out they are all kinda just standing not moving much at all.
  6. SisterFlash

    SisterFlash Songster

    The new compact florencent lights do have draw toxic chemicals. mecury for one. Some people have had cleanup issues in their homes. Intresting the press is just starting to cover this.

    Think about do you really want to put one in a coop to save a few dollars. Mecury damage to environment or more fuel burned to make the electricty. I will chose my home and farm not being a toxic waste dump.

    read more as I was shocked when I started looking into this.

    you can do your own googling on toxicity of these bulbs. I guess while mr gore (who I did vote for) is off promoting these bulbs he forgot basic chemistry class.

    Barb [​IMG]
  7. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I'd still go with fluorescents because they can be recycled and the net number of bulbs going to landfills is much less. The long bulbs are the easy breakers. The compacts are often inside plastic casings now too. As for my reduction of toxic wastes, I don't plan on ever getting a tv!

    Then again, I know many cities are not as recycle and reuse friendly as Seattle. It is illegal here to put paper in the trash can and if recyclables are found in your trash, you get a fine and your trash does not get taken.
  8. SisterFlash

    SisterFlash Songster

    Where do I recycle them. I cannot find a single place in my county which is a problem because these are selling like hotcakes. It would be good if the places selling them was also responsibel for recycling them.

    Plus I do not think most people are aware these contain mecury and need to be recycled and the toxic issues if one breaks and how to clean up.

    How do you plan to clean up your coop if one breaks? What equipment should you wear and how do you propertly dispose of the contaminated wood bedding? I am not sure so I would not use them. Homes have been contaminated and I think the cost one woman had to pay was about 2K to clean up the room. Does this sound like a good idea?

    I like the engergy savings but it would be great if the places that we purchased them had a recycle program.

    Barb [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2008
  9. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    That's the interesting thing, the recycle this and that is EVERYWHERE around here. Even public places have cans for garbage and recycling right next to each other. Might ask your public waste facility if they have a program in the area they haven't mentioned. I know the further away from the big city, the less the stuff is regulated.

    Another problem with the cheap ones you get in some places... is that they were manufactured so badily, they don't last long and then we end up with the same waste and breakage issue that nobody wants!
  10. gmc

    gmc Songster

    Nov 24, 2007
    Clay City, KY
    If you can adequately read a newspaper at the chickens level in the coup, youÂ’re fine on light intensity. Hope that helps.

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