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Low temperatures

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by swake, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. swake

    swake New Egg

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    Feb 21, 2012
    So my grandfather wants to move them into the shed tonight, but it's suppose to drop into the 40F tomorrow night, giving them roughly 50F. With the heat lamps last time we barely had over 70F.,

    How low of a temperature a one week old chick can stand? Also what would happen if it dropped that low?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I don't have a good answer to either of your questions. There is a rule of thumb on this forum that would say they need ot be 85 to 90 at one week, but that is a very safe, very conservative range. It is extremely safe almost regardless of your circumstances. There are several factors involved as to how low they can actually withstand. A few of those factors are how well they are protected from drafts, do they have good bedding they can snuggle down in, and are there enough to keep each other warm. But there are factors.

    Maybe this will help. The way I do mine is to have a large brooder in the coop that has a good draft guard around it so there are no breezes hitting them, but I only heat one area. I don't even put a thermometer on it, but I'd think it is at least 85 to 90 directly under the heat lamp. The brooder is well ventilated and the area away from the heat source cools off to ambient. At times, that is in the 40's or 50's. Well before they are a week old, they are playing all over that brooder, just going back to the heat when they need to warm up. Many people would be amazed at how much time three day old chicks will spend in those cooler areas.

    At night, they sleep in a pile pretty close to the heat source. They are not cold because they are not doing that distress peeping. They sleep in a pile because they like company.

    I would go bananas trying to keep the entire brooder the perfect temperature. I just heat one area and let them find their comfort zone. I actually think they are healthier since they spend time in varying temperatures.

    So don't worry about most of that shed cooling off. Just keep one small area warm and let them decide how warm they want to be. And be very careful with those heat lamps. They start a lot of fires. Don't depend on that clamp that comes with it at all. Secure it with wire or something that cannot slip or be knocked off.
     

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