Lighting for henhouse at night??

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by albyboy24, Sep 7, 2019.

  1. albyboy24

    albyboy24 Hatching

    Aug 27, 2019
    My chickies are 6 weeks old and ill be putting them in the coop this monday. Does anyone uses lighting for the coop during the night? Since chickens cant see at night i was wondering if putting a little light would be good for them?. Has anyone had this issue before? They are used to have a light on all night and eat during the night too, since i have them inside my house (boujie chickens lol). Last night i put them in the coop for a try out and i went to check on them and they were in a corner without moving, so i grabbed them and put them inside the house again. Should i get like a little battery light or something to have it on at nights? Any advise would be great! Thank you.
    slordaz, Coon Cotten, Kee11 and 4 others like this.
  2. ValerieJ

    ValerieJ Free Ranging

    Jul 24, 2016
    Washington State
    Hi! :frow Welcome to BYC!

    It's good to have a light to guide them into the coop when it starts getting dark for the first week while they get used to the new digs. After that a light is not necessary.
    Coon Cotten, Kee11, kerbotx and 3 others like this.
  3. Mybackyardpeepers

    Mybackyardpeepers Crowing

    Mar 22, 2019
    Good morning and welcome to the BYC flock!!! When I put my silkie chicks out for the first few weeks I used my daughter's owl carry along night light, it had a timer in it and shut off after so long. Once they got used to being put in the coop I stopped using it.
  4. Wee Farmer Sarah

    Wee Farmer Sarah Free Ranging

    Hello and welcome to BYC! It is really better for the chicks to get used to normal lighting cycles. I wouldn't use supplemental lighting in the evening other than a couple of days during the adjustment period. Supplemental lighting is better when provided for in the early morning.
  5. TexasWineGuy

    TexasWineGuy Songster

    Jun 15, 2019
    Magnolia, TX
    Let me add something here. The posters above nailed 2 of the 3 main reasons to have internal lighting: coaxing them into the Coop at dusk, and to help them with a new coop adjustment period.

    There is also one more reason to have an internal light source: you want the ability to peek inside the coop at night without having to enter the coop. Never know when some ruckus comes about that prompts you to want to inspect the coop internals.

    I use this 10" LED Light for my coop light, and I mounted the switch for it on the outside of the coop, for obvious reasons. This 10" light is more than enough for my 8' x 10' coop.


    20190810_175218.jpg 20190810_173432.jpg
  6. jreardon1918

    jreardon1918 Songster

    Jul 13, 2016
    Southeast, MA
    My Coop
    I use a flashlight to check on the hens at night. Last year i used some light to hasten the sunrise. I waited until after chrustmas and the molt. But it is lights out at night. They have all learned to get on the roost before dark.
    slordaz, Coon Cotten, Kee11 and 10 others like this.
  7. NHMountainMan

    NHMountainMan Songster

    Feb 25, 2019
    New Hampshire
    I use a headlamp to check them out at night. It has an option of red lighting which is what I use typically to do a headcount. If something is amiss I switch the headlamp to white LED to check out the coop in more detail. And it leaves my hands free.
    slordaz, Coon Cotten, Kee11 and 8 others like this.
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    You are talking about 6 week old chicks going into the coop for the first time. Not sure if you are just putting them in the coop section only or if you are planning on giving them access to the run at the same time. I assume you have brooded them in your house and they have had constant light. And I assume you do not have any other chickens in that coop so you do not have integration issues.

    Chickens do not like change but they are fairly quick to adapt. Some people turn the lights off in the brooder in ever-increasing amounts to adjust them to the dark. Others don't. Typically the first time they are in dark they are upset, but they usually get over this fairly quickly and then go to sleep. When I turn the lights off I let them complain until they quit complaining. This has never harmed the chicks. Sometimes these things are harder on people than they are the chickens.

    With broody hens raising chicks I don't worry about any of this. When it gets dark, it gets dark. The hen will take care of them. I imagine it is pretty dark under a broody hen anyway.

    Chickens need a certain amount of dark downtime. If they are kept in constant light their egg production can suffer. They tend to have more behavioral problems. I don't worry about that with young chicks, it has never been a problem. But I don't keep lights on 24/7 any longer than I feel there is a need.

    I don't know how much natural light you have in your coop, probably from windows. You need enough light for you and your chickens to be able to see what they are doing in there during the day but when it should be dark it should be fairly dark. If you don't have enough natural in there for them to see how to go to bed, they may have going to bed issues. If you have light outside from street lamps or such, it may get too dark inside the coop for them to see before it gets dark enough outside to tell them to go to bed. People have solved these problems when they have them by putting a light inside the coop for a short while when it is getting dark. If they do not have access to the run yet then this is not an issue.

    I assume you are not providing any heat. At six weeks they don't need any. When young chicks that are not yet roosting go to sleep they generally sleep in groups. Corners fell like a nice protected place for them. Them choosing to sleep in a group in a corner sounds absolutely normal to me. If they are upset mine give a distress peeping. That distress peeping is easy to recognize, it tears at your soul. Quite different to their normal peeping. If yours are not giving that distressed peeping when the lights go out, they have already adjusted to the dark. Sometimes it is that easy.
    slordaz, BDutch, so lucky and 14 others like this.
  9. leighks

    leighks Songster

    Apr 15, 2017
    Western New York
    My Coop
    I have a little night light in the coop that’s on a light sensor, so it stays on at night. It’s pretty dim but does make it easy for me to peek in on them after dark. I was only going to leave it in there when they first started going in as chicks, but that was almost 3 years ago, so I figure I will just leave well enough alone.
  10. GC-Raptor

    GC-Raptor Crowing

    Jul 26, 2016
    Connecticut, U.S.A.
    With my first Flock of Chicks, they were put in the coop at 5 weeks old.
    I have electricity in the coop and I used to leave a nightlight on all night.
    When they started to lay I noticed bullying after dark two nights.
    I then only left the nightlight on till after sunset when all were on the roosts and I locked up the coop.
    My second Flock were used to the dark in the brooder.
    So the only reason for the nightlight is so they can see to get on the roosts after sunset. 20190527_203434-2.jpg 20190527_203525.jpg . Most are on the roosts after sunset. The hen on the floor is a runt. I have to put her on the roost. Then nightlight is turned off. GC

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