Question about outdoor temps and chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by howtogrowanegg, May 5, 2009.

  1. howtogrowanegg

    howtogrowanegg Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 4, 2009

    I've read that chicks should be fully feathered (betwee 5-8 weeks old) before they can go outside.

    I have 5 week old Australorps and Easter Eggers. Some look more feathered out than others, but being a first-timer not sure what "fully feathered out" looks like.

    I'd like to bring them out to their coop this week, but concerned about our 40 degree nights. I would still use a heat lamp, but not sure if 100 or 250 watt is adequate.

    I also read that the outside temperature shouldn't go below 65 degrees.

    Does anyone have any thoughts or suggestions?


  2. Blondie

    Blondie Chillin' With My Peeps

    They can go outside!! You just have to keep the temps up. My chicks went out to the coop when they were 3 days old. Of course I had a heat lamp. Night temps were in the low 40's.

    At 5 weeks old, even in Vermont, I'm sure you don't need the heat lamp during the day. Just watch their behavior when the heat lamp is on. Are they all huddled under it? I would bet a few are under the lamp, and others are running around having fun.

    Chickens are meant to live outside!! They will grow really fast once they get outside!

    Good luck and don't worry! [​IMG]
  3. JewellFarm

    JewellFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Lebanon, Virginia
    I put my 4 week old babies out yesterday. It was even raining on and off but they have a light and lots of warm bedding. I worried all night long, scared to death something would somehow get in and get them. I got up this morning and they are all out playing, scratching, and having a wonderful time. I believe it was in the low 50's to high 40's here last night. They are a lot tougher than we give them credit for anyway. Hope that helps you some.
  4. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    They should not be outdoors without heat before fully feathered. They can be brooded in a coop or outbuilding from day one, and many people do this. At 5 weeks I'd probably turn the heat lamp on at night for 2 or 3 more weeks. Can't really say what size heat lamp, as it depends on so many factors. Their behavior will tell you if they are warm enough. I'd go out there well after dark and check on them, for a night or two.

    Not sure about the not going below 65 at night thing. For adults, babies or what? Adult birds can do fine in coops well below freezing. It's like brooding babies outdoors, you just have to learn their needs and get the setup right.
  5. noitulover

    noitulover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 23, 2009
    Central Virginia
    if you've got a heat lamp out there, they should be just fine!
  6. sherrydeanne

    sherrydeanne Chillin' With My Peeps

    I put my heatlamp down pointing at the floor of the coop. When they decided to roost high instead of under the lamp (about 6 weeks or so) I took it out.
  7. JessaLynn

    JessaLynn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 7, 2008
    Sandusky County,Ohio
    I put ours out at 4 weeks and there just fine.No heat lamp and it has gotten down in 40s at night here.They were feathered out mostly but head still had some fluff on it.Yours will be ok don't worry [​IMG]
  8. howtogrowanegg

    howtogrowanegg Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 4, 2009
    Many Thanks to All of You [​IMG]

    We're planning to bring them out tonight. This will be fun.


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