Newbie chick questions

3minionmom

Hatching
May 25, 2017
2
0
9
Hi, I am in the process of building our coop and our girls are between 5-6 weeks old. How much time do I have before I absolutely must move them from the broader to the coop?

Also, I have suspicions that this hen may be a roo? Any thoughts?
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boskelli1571

Crowing
10 Years
Mar 7, 2011
3,769
1,476
381
Finger Lakes, NY
Hi there and welcome:frow what breeds do you have? If they are large fowl you are fast running out of time! They should be off light by week 8 for sure, depending on the ambient temp where you are. If you have a huge brooder you can leave them a bit longer, but generally week 8-10 is good for the coop, some folks move them earlier.
I'm not very good at 'guess the sex' - in your 2nd pic the two chicks look to be about the same on comb development, so I'm going to pass on it....:)
 

3minionmom

Hatching
May 25, 2017
2
0
9
Ah, thanks for the info. We probably have 3-4 more days of building, but it is still in the 40's and 50's here so I have been really iffy on when to move them. They are Rhode Island Reds, hoping their cold hardiness will help with our -35°F winters.
 

azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
23,850
34,516
1,122
Colorado Rockies
Your suspicions are correct - that's a baby roo.

If you plan on moving the chicks into the new coop in a few days, they're more than ready. To prepare them and acclimatize them to cooler temps, you need to turn off their heat lamp now. Both day and night. They don't need it.

If today is sunny and calm, take them outside for a romp for a couple hours. Hopefully you have the run set up. They can watch you work on their coop.

Tomorrow increase the time you let them play outdoors, each day increasing the time until you make the big move. They should be fine with no heat in the coop.

For other newbies reading this thread, you are weaning your chicks off heat practically as soon as you get them. You begin with the lowest temperature under the heat source you can get away with, from 80F-95F, according to what makes the chicks comfortable. No. There is no law that demands you start your chicks at 95! Then at the end of the first week you're reducing it, and reducing it further each week until you get to 70F.

The rest of the brooder should be much cooler so the chicks have space to shed excess heat. By age three weeks, according to the ambient temp, they probably won't need heat any longer during the day if it's around 70. By age four to five weeks, they should be completely weaned off heat.
 

jeria

Songster
May 5, 2017
1,390
1,773
236
Independence MO
Your suspicions are correct - that's a baby roo.

If you plan on moving the chicks into the new coop in a few days, they're more than ready. To prepare them and acclimatize them to cooler temps, you need to turn off their heat lamp now. Both day and night. They don't need it.

If today is sunny and calm, take them outside for a romp for a couple hours. Hopefully you have the run set up. They can watch you work on their coop.

Thanks for the info, my chicks arrive next week. A newbie at this as the last time I had chicks was 30+ years ago.

Tomorrow increase the time you let them play outdoors, each day increasing the time until you make the big move. They should be fine with no heat in the coop.

For other newbies reading this thread, you are weaning your chicks off heat practically as soon as you get them. You begin with the lowest temperature under the heat source you can get away with, from 80F-95F, according to what makes the chicks comfortable. No. There is no law that demands you start your chicks at 95! Then at the end of the first week you're reducing it, and reducing it further each week until you get to 70F.

The rest of the brooder should be much cooler so the chicks have space to shed excess heat. By age three weeks, according to the ambient temp, they probably won't need heat any longer during the day if it's around 70. By age four to five weeks, they should be completely weaned off heat.
 

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