Lights Out?


7 Years
Nov 28, 2016
Lake Superior in upper Michigan

I just moved our 15 CX chicks outdoors yesterday. They are 4 weeks old to the day. They have most of their feathers but are still bare on their 'shoulders' under the tops of their wings. I had a light on in their coop last night. (41 degrees out) When can I quit using the red lamp for heat? Our nights are typically 35-45 degrees this time of year but our days may get up into the mid 70s.

Thanks, in advance, for your help,

PS. This is our first ever batch of meat chicks.
Usually chicks are fully feathered and heat-independant by 6 wks, however, if you want to stop using the heat lamp sooner, you could create a huddle box of some sort for them to keep themselves warm in. If you decide to keep using the heat lamp for another week or two, they would only need it at night.
Thanks. They are in a 4'x4' coop that is 3' high with a couple of vents at the top. The box should be relatively draft free since it only has two vents (4"x8") and a pop door. (9"x9") Would that be small enough for huddling at 38 degrees?

They have a small outdoor run that is 10'x18' which they haven't explored yet this morning but I expect them to once it warms today.

Thanks for the help. It is my first time with chicks and I don't want to lose them due to a mistake on my part. We have had chickens for years but always bought or rescued laying pullets before. This is a new adventure for us. (We also have 8 little quail in another brooder.)

A huddle box is a cardboard box with enough floor space for them all to fit in without being too crowded, and tall enough to stand in. Cut an opening, big enough for a couple of them to fit out at a time, a couple inches or so from the bottom. Fill with bedding about an inch deep, and you have a huddle box! They can go inside to huddle and keep warm, because the box will hold their body heat.

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