Need help! Chicks ready to join older hens outside in coop....

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by nharbison0722, Sep 1, 2016.

  1. nharbison0722

    nharbison0722 Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi everyone! Hope all is well. I have a weird situation. I've been brooding 4 chicks inside in a HUGE kennel with mama heating pad and sometimes a heat lamp. They are at a constant 80-85 degree temp. The chicks are now seven weeks old and more than ready to go outside. I've only kept them inside due to the EXTREME heat here in Texas. (100+temps) I was trying to wait until September when the weather cools off slightly. I knew that if I took them from there constant 80-85 degree brooder to the terrible 100+ temps outside that they would likely die from the heat extremes. So my question is this..... How long can I keep them in the brooder safely? They are quickly out growing it. They now have about 2 feet of space each. How low should the outside temps be before I let them outside? One of my main concerns is that I was going to put them out in the chicken run still in the kennel for about a week to let the other older chickens get to know them. I didn't want them to over heat in the kennel. Is that the best way to go about this? I'm looking for advice on ALL of this!
    Thanks so much for your help!
    Take care!
     
  2. ejcrist

    ejcrist Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do they have shade in your run? At 7 weeks I believe they're more than ready to go outside as long as there's shade available.
     
  3. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Shade and cool water, and they will be fine outside in a coop. Honestly, they probably could have gone out to a grow-out coop/run at 2 or 3 weeks old, with those kinds of temps. If you had done that, they would already be integrated and part of the adult flock by now.
     
  4. nharbison0722

    nharbison0722 Out Of The Brooder

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    I could make them shade but I'm still worried about the temp extreme. We are still facing 100 degree days
     
  5. nharbison0722

    nharbison0722 Out Of The Brooder

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    Should they stay in the kennel for a week outside like I mentioned- to let the other chicks get to know them? Or should they be big enough to take care of themselves?
     
  6. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    They should be big enough to take care of themselves, provided that there is enough room for them to escape the adult birds and there are multiple food and water stations.
     
  7. nharbison0722

    nharbison0722 Out Of The Brooder

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    They really don't have a place to escape, all there is is a run and attached coop
     
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    How big is the run? How many chicks are you introducing? And how many adults do you have?
     
  9. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Here's the picture I get in my mind from the little bits of information you've given us.

    I picture a simple coop with a small rectangular run with a few "chicks" that are a couple months older than the chicks you want to integrate. That's about all I can come up with.

    The ages and number of older birds is a crucial element of this exercise. If you are integrating seven-week olds with adult chickens that are a few years old, you shouldn't have too many problems with bullying. On the other hand, if the older birds are themselves not quite mature yet, and they outnumber the youngsters, you are probably going to see a good deal of bullying of the new chicks.

    I would suggest using the panic room method of integration, but it will only work if the older birds are full grown. It would make integration go much easier to have a safe refuge for the smalls that the older birds can't access.

    If the older birds are only slightly larger than the new chicks, your best bet would be to break up your run into sections so it's not just one large area where every chicken is out in the open and vulnerable. Adding "furniture" such as perches of varying heights and tree stumps so the smaller birds can find safety out of reach of older birds would help considerably.
     
  10. nharbison0722

    nharbison0722 Out Of The Brooder

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    The chicks that are outside are only 3 months old. The coop is small, but accomidating. The run is huge, both long and wide. The chicks in the brooder and outside are almost the same size now. Obviously the ones outside are a bit bigger, but not by much. I was more concerned about the temps. Since they've been inside under a constant temp and we still have hot days ahead. Would the method of keeping them in the kennel for a few days in the run be wise? Thanks. Also, there are 6 outside and 4 chicks inside.
     

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