Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ButchGood, Mar 20, 2012.

  1. ButchGood

    ButchGood Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2012
    Central Texas
    Bigg storm came rolling in last night. Power went out at about 4:00am. So my 8 day olds are sitting at 70 degrees instead of the 89 degrees they need. All 16 were huddled together in the corner. Im at work and worried. My wife is at home with them. I hope they will be OK untill power is restored.[​IMG]
  2. heybarb

    heybarb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 9, 2012
    North Carolina
    Not sure where the chicks are, but I would definitely cover the brooder to keep the heat in - maybe with a towel or piece of cardboard. We lost power when our chicks were about 3 days old. I ended up taking them for a ride in the car, because I could turn on the heat. :)
  3. ButchGood

    ButchGood Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2012
    Central Texas
    Wow I never thought about a car ride. Well my wife called and we have power and the chicks are fine and bouncing around the brooder. She was just getting ready to fire up a camp stove and the power was restored.
    Last night I modified the brooder and made it twice the size. The chicks loved the extra space. They were running and flapping thier wings jumping/flying over thier feeder. Without the power and twice the space, I was really worried about them getting chilled. I probably worry too much. They are actually pretty tough little birds. But all is well.
    I still would like to hear more ideas for this kind of emergency.
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    First, remember that the guidelines are just guidelines, not absolute laws of nature. Most of the time, they don't need temperatures as warm as the "guideline" temperatures. There are a lot of different factors involved, such as how many there are to keep each other warm, how good your draft guard is, and if they are used to cooler temperatures so they are more acclimated. I consider the guidelines as extremely safe, very conservative temperatures. They are over-the-top for most of us but they will keep practically everyone out of trouble, even if they mess up a little on other things.

    They don't need the entire brooder the "perfect" temperature. They just need a warm spot they can go to if they get cold. I think they are healthier if they can spend some time in cooler areas and just go back to warm up when they need to. I agree that 70 is getting pretty cool for 8 day olds, though.

    So, what can you do? First don't worry about the entire brooder. Just provide heat in one area and try to not burn them doing it. Maybe fill up a hot water bottle or plastic bag of you have hot water in your water heater. Maybe warm up some water or even a pan of dirt in your grill. Don't get it too hot!!!!

    Make sure there are no drafts hitting them. If they have bedding to snuggle down in, that can help. Consider a hover. Kind if imagine a baking pan turned over where they can get under the edge and stand up. Hot air rises. If you trap hot air this way, their own body heat will be trapped and keep them warm. Don't be surprised if they leave this area a lot. It can get pretty warm.

    Hang a dust mop or something similar with cloth strands hanging down where they can get in it. This will act as insulation and trap their body heat. They seem to like to snuggle in there too.

    Those chicks are a lot tougher than many people think, but they do need certain basic care.
  5. crchickens

    crchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 9, 2011
    Blue Ridge, TX
    One very cold night, I had a newborn pot bellied pig, and I put some of those hand warmers under his house. Maybe you could put some of them under the brooder so they stay warmer.
  6. xC0000005

    xC0000005 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 1, 2009
    Kirkland, WA
    What ridgerunner said x100. I borrowed a surface temp thermometer and a shielded air thermometer (a fancy phrase for "in a box") and have had a little fun playing "where do the chick stay?" starting from 3 day olds on up. The answer in no case has been 95 degrees. Now, I'm not telling you to avoid putting a 95 degree spot in your brooder - I'm a firm believer in the "light with room to get away" theory of letting the chicks figure out where they are warm. That said, at three days they were choosing spots that were 87 degrees consistently (I had one sprawled clean under the lamp - 103 degrees. I figure it was taking a chick sauna, because it got up eventually and went some place cooler). At two weeks they are consistently in the 75 degree area and avoid the warmer spots. I keep it there because it makes ME more comfortable knowing that if they get cold there's the 85 degree spot for them to go. These are EEs.

    The Meaties in the green house, on the other hand, are a whole different beast. They are warm to the touch all the time, and feel moist even when the air is dry. They have NEVER stayed under the center of the heat lamp, but they sure do like it when the lamp is raised up a bit. At three weeks they are resting at the end of the brooder that is 60 degrees most of the time, and when they do move, they are in the 50 degree (air temp) area. Once again, they have a warmer spot if they so choose, and when it was snowing this weekend they were all up under the lamp. Chicks are less temperature sensitive than I though, I guess. Some may actually NEED the warmth. I can't say as mine don't seem to want it, but I'd feel horrible if I said "They don't need it" and a batch died. So the heat lamp is as much to keep me comfortable as it is them.

  7. KimKimWilliamso

    KimKimWilliamso Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2012
    Nanton, AB, Canada

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