New to baby chicks: Questions about where to start them out

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by newchickenista, Feb 10, 2012.

  1. newchickenista

    newchickenista Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2012
    Southeastern, Oklahoma
    I live in Southern Oklahoma and we've had a pretty mild winter. I am looking into getting about a dozen baby chicks from my local Orscheln Farm store as soon as within the next week. I am wondering about my best options for brooding my baby chicks. Do I have to keep them inside my house for the first 4 or so weeks? We have several sheds and outbuilding on our property, would it be enough to keep them in a box with a heat lamp in an un-insulated building on the property (unfortunatly the only insulated building would be my house). Any help, advice, or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    You need to keep them at 100 degrees for the first week, 95 for the second, 90 for week three, etc. If the temperature drops below what the chicks can take, you will probably have losses.

    SO: if you can safely keep the chicks at 100 degrees in an uninsulated building, then go for it. However, you run the risk of losing chicks if you lose power, even for a little bit.
     
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I brood in an unheated, uninsulated barn in colder weather than you'll experience in Oklahoma. There is no problem. I brood out in the barn, as chickens have been brooded for centuries. I prefer the dust and smells be out there, thank you.

    100 is way over kill. 90 is plenty and easy to achieve with a 250Watt red heat lamp. The chicks move into the heat circle and move out and move about in the cooler air, just as they would if they brooded by a hen. Each week, they'll spend less time in the direct heat. By week three, you can raise the lamp, or use a lower wattage bulb and reduce the heat output. By week 6, they'll need no supplemental heating anymore.

    I have lots of photos on my BYC Page of my brooder. Just click my link below.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012
  4. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    100 degrees is the body temperature of a mother hen. If you hatch a large number of chicks, there is wiggle room with the temps---the chicks can always pile together for warmth. Better to be safe than sorry, especially if you aren't doing a large hatch.
     
  5. newchickenista

    newchickenista Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2012
    Southeastern, Oklahoma
    Thank you all so much for your advice and encouragement! What you've said is what I figured, but I thought it would be best to ask before I made some drastic mistake. I am very excited!
     

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