Moving chicks to cooler location?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by cnicho05, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. cnicho05

    cnicho05 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 22, 2014
    Owosso, MI

    Currently, I'm raising six Rhode Island Red and two Jersey Giants in central Michigan. As I am new to this wonderful experience I have confronted my first question about the process. The chicks I have are roughly three weeks old and have, what seems like, the majority of the feathers.

    I would like to move them from our main house into the garage, as soon as possible, to free up space in our main living area. Since I live in Michigan the temperature of my garage seems to adjust quite frequently with the temperature outside. Currently, my garage temperature is ranging between 30*-40* (without any heat lamp).

    If I use a 250 watt (red bulb) heat lamp could I transfer these birds to my garage soon?

    When I checked the temperature with the heat lamp I was able to get it up to 40*-50* or somewhere between there.
  2. chickenlver2013

    chickenlver2013 Chillin' With My Peeps

    You can move them to the garage, but make sure the heat lamp goes with them. They're still quite young to go without a heat lamp. When they're around 6 weeks old you can take the heat lamp of of them because it will be April by then and you wouldn't need a heat lamp in April.
  3. cnicho05

    cnicho05 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 22, 2014
    Owosso, MI
    Thanks for the info...
  4. Cacique500

    Cacique500 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 2, 2013
    Atlanta, Georgia
    The rule of thumb is to start at 95-100 and decrease 5 degrees each week until they are *fully* feathered. So the heat you should be providing after three weeks should be around 80 to 85 degrees at 3 weeks.

    I think ours went out at 6 weeks, but that was in Georgia in June. Here's a video of what they looked like feather-wise:

  5. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Flock Master

    Nov 7, 2012
    My understanding is 90-95 for week 1, and decrease by 5 degrees each week. You'll want them to have enough room to get away from the heat. and a lot of experienced poultry keepers will say that the chicks don't need quite that much heat. As you gain experience, you'll find their comfort level, and adjust accordingly. As long as you can provide enough heat at the recommended level with room for all of the chicks to get under the heat, they should be fine.

    You might need to make some adjustments to keep the heat in the brooder. Insulation, blankets... depends on the set up. What ever you use, be sure it is not a fire risk. Also, is your brooder predator proof?
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    This was some advice given by one of the 'old timers' here on acclimating chicks to cooler temps:

    0-3 weeks, inside the house, mud room or basement is fine.

    3-7 weeks, work their acclimation program in a cold garage. The old axiom of 5 degrees F per week? Well, that's got to go out the window. After week 4, you've got to start pushing them. By week 6, they need to handle pretty cool weather and by week 7, they need to be just about on their own. A 40 watt, regular old fashioned bulb is OK, but nothing more.
    7-8 week birds can take cold as well as the adults. No problem. BUT….. you've got to "step them down", bit by bit, week to week. They'll adjust just fine. They're chickens.

    Broodies raise chicks outside in cool weather all the time, as long as the chicks can get back under some heat when they need it, they can spend quite a bit of the day in much cooler temps than is generally thought possible.

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