lights on or off?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by MeatKing, Sep 21, 2009.

  1. MeatKing

    MeatKing Songster

    Hi everyone, we got our first meat chicks in... Their doing well.. I've read some people say leave lights on all the time, for the first couple weeks, than just durning the day... I've had some people say. lights on all the time... (this seems kind've cruel) We live in Canada, and the nights are getting cold. They need it for heat... So has the chicks grow, how old are they when they don't need the light and can tollerate some cold? What temp is too cold/ at what ages? Thank-you everyone!
  2. lurky

    lurky Songster

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    I would think it should be the same as for any baby chick, which is 95 degrees the first week, and 90 the 2nd and continue to drop 5 degrees each week.
    I have never raised meat birds, so if its different for them, someone will post to let you know [​IMG]
    but as babies, they will not be able to survive the cold northern nights without heat.
  3. kingmt

    kingmt Songster

    May 1, 2009
    Mason WV
    It depends on how cold it is. They will feather out quicker if they are a Cornish X but they still need heat. Just like caring for any other chick except they grow faster & (based on what I've read) need the vitamins more then the other chicks.

    If it is just one of the rangers then it is just like any other chick.
  4. ricky bamboo

    ricky bamboo In the Brooder

    Sep 3, 2008
    Roseville, Ontario.
    I'm a first time meat grower too (cornish X) - about 4 weeks into the process. I have had the light on (100 watts) since I got them home. First week and a half in a brooder in the basement and then transferrred to the coop (8'x6')with lots of straw insulation. They have started to free range in the daytime and sprawl out in the sun, but on cool days they will go in the coop and warm up under the light.
    When night falls, they follow the light from the coop and jump inside.
    I thought it might be cruel and unusual to keep the lights on 24/7, but they seem very happy and are growing incredibly fast. Sleeping with the lights on isn't a problem ans there have been no predator problems. I've noticed the temp as low as 58*F in the coop at night ( we are in Canada too) and they aren't piling onto eachother for warmth, so I assume they are happy.
    And also I can see what I'm doing if out there at night.
    My birds have 'feathered out' a lot quicker than I thought. I think that by about week 4-5 you could safely remove a heat source as long as the temps don't go too extreme and they have a dry draft free housing. I'm planning to turn the lights off starting next week (week 5 or so) and then send to freezer camp at week 10.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2009

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