Raising Chickens to Hens for the first time! (Maryland)

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Living_Legend, Jan 3, 2018.

  1. Living_Legend

    Living_Legend Songster

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    Jan 3, 2018
    Freeland, MD
    My Coop
    Hello,

    I am new here. I am planning on raising 4 one day old chicks into hens for eggs. I have done a lot of research but I have a few questions I can not find clear answers for. My question is all about timing. I will brooder the chickens in my basement home until I can take them outside and put them in the coop.

    When do I start this process in Maryland? Meaning when is it safe to take them outside where they can handle any temperature? I read that Week 5 as long as the temperature does not fall below 60..... Is there a week like 6, 7, or 8 that it no longer matters? I will also be getting a bread that can handle Maryland weather all year when adults.

    What I am getting at is if I want to put the chickens outside in the coop on April 1st (avg 40-60 deg) and they need to be 8 weeks old then my start date is February 4th.

    Thanks for your help,
    Mike

    Maryland
    April Average 45-70 degrees
    May Average 55-80 degrees
     
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  2. Abriana

    Abriana Psalm 46:5

    When they are fully feathered put them out. You can take them out for short playtime in the yard to help them get used to the weather. They should definitely be fine in the weather temperatures you posted above. Welcome to byc!!
     
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  3. Living_Legend

    Living_Legend Songster

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    Jan 3, 2018
    Freeland, MD
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    When are they normally fully feathered? Week 6,7,8? I know its probably a exact sience but I just want to do my best at timing this the best I can for my first time.
     
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  4. Abriana

    Abriana Psalm 46:5

    I always forget but I’d say around there.
     
  5. Living_Legend

    Living_Legend Songster

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    Jan 3, 2018
    Freeland, MD
    My Coop
    I am also thinking of getting Easter Egger Chicken to get a colorful batch of eggs and I read they handle all seasons.
     
  6. Abriana

    Abriana Psalm 46:5

    I’m always hatching but always forgetting when they’re feathered
     
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  7. featheredplanets

    featheredplanets Songster

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    Different breeds feather fully at different times. They have enough/the feathers they need to be weaned off heat at three weeks old. No idea on Maryland weather but if it’s cold you might want to brood them until they’re four weeks, wean them off heat and keep them inside until they’re five weeks, then put them outside. As long as the coop is safe, draft free, adequate ventilation, correct roosts, they’ll be a-okay, there would be no reason to keep them inside on heat any longer. They don’t need to be eight weeks old to move into the coop

    During this time you might want to take them outside for a few hours a day so they can start acclimatising and learn what the outside is and what it offers. Good luck :)
     
  8. Living_Legend

    Living_Legend Songster

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    Jan 3, 2018
    Freeland, MD
    My Coop
    Are you suppose to close the door to the coop at night thats connected to the closed in run?
     
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  9. featheredplanets

    featheredplanets Songster

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    I would definitely close it and latch it, especially if there’s predators in your area
     
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  10. Living_Legend

    Living_Legend Songster

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    Jan 3, 2018
    Freeland, MD
    My Coop
    So do you open it at Sun up and close it at Sun down?
     

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