my baby chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ronerts454, Jan 23, 2017.

  1. ronerts454

    ronerts454 New Egg

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    Jan 23, 2017
    my baby chicks are three weeks old. when can I move them outside and how long will they need a heat lamp
     
  2. KikisGirls

    KikisGirls BYC Fan Premium Member Project Manager

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    My Coop
    What is your weather like?
    Do you have a water proof coop?
     
  3. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    like KikisGirls said, please provide some shelter and weather information, these are very important subjects for chicks!
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Northwest Arkansas
    Welcome to the forum. Glad you found us!

    The more information you give us the better we can respond to your question. If you stick around, and I hope you do, it would help with questions like this to modify your profile to show your general location.

    I will hatch some chicks in about a week. Those chicks will go in my brooder in the coop although the overnight lows are projected to be below freezing. The area where the chicks are will be quite toasty though. It has great ventilation up high but very good breeze protection where the chicks are. And of course it is out of rain and snow.

    One of the issues with brooding them outside or moving yours before they are ready to go without supplemental heat is the temperature swings. Mine will see outside temperatures below freezing. They will also see some daily highs in the 60’s or above. My 3’ x 6’ brooder is big enough and well enough ventilated that I can keep the warm area warm enough on the coldest night yet the far end will be cool enough on the warmest day. As long as you can give them a place that is right for them they are great at regulating their own temperature.

    There are some “if’s” involved. Do you have adult chickens in the coop that give you integration issues? Can you keep one area warm enough in your coldest weather and another cool enough in your warmest, plus decent ventilation and wind protection at their level. I assume you have a dependable electricity supply? If yes, they can go out now.

    I also use a heat lamp. The first thing I do is take that clamp off and put it in my metal recycling bin so I am not tempted to use the clamp. I securely wire that lamp in place so it cannot be knocked off by me or anything else. I use wire, not string, so it cannot burn in two and fail.

    At what age can they do without supplemental heat? That’s where we really need information. In a ridiculous heat wave a few years back I turned the daytime heat off at 2 days and the nighttime heat off at 5 days. In those temperatures they did not need it. If the overnight lows are below freezing I will keep the heat on until at least 5 weeks, maybe a few more days.

    I’ve had chicks less than 6 weeks old go through nights below freezing with no supplemental heat. There are some critical things to that though. Mine had great ventilation and great breeze protection. The top was practically open but no rain or snow could get in. A cold breeze could not hit them at their level. And they were acclimated. By playing in the colder parts of my brooder in cold weather they were used to the cold. If yours are kept in tropical conditions and taken directly into freezing weather without a chance to acclimate it can be a shock.

    Taking them outside in cold weather, even for just a few minutes, can really help them acclimate. Plus you might be surprised at how well they actually handle cold weather.
     
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