Ready to go outside?


6 Years
Sep 17, 2013

I would like some opinions on this. My youngest chicks are now 3 weeks old. As a brooder I have them in a bathtub. I have a heat lamp, but pretty much from day one they did not care much for it. The house is at 80 degrees, and right from the start the chicks pretty much stayed out of the heat lamp area. Even at night they would sleep all over the place, but never anywhere under the lamp.
I still kept adjusting the lamp so the chicks had the chance to be in their "target temperature".

At 3 weeks they have become pretty good flyers already, and all of them can get out of the tub. So far they don't care though, they like their tub. And as the house is warm anyway, I'm not worried.

Yesterday I took them out to the coop the first time and they spent a few hours outside. They seemed very happy. It's in the 80s all day. This weekend I will complete the last phase of the coop, and I am considering to move the fully outside then. I hadn't planned on doing that so early, but now I have the feeling it would be the best for them.

Night temps go no lower than 70. Do you think that is OK for them when they are about 4 weeks old? In the future I am planning on keeping the door to the run open at night, so they can roam as they like, at first I would make sure they are inside though and close the coop door. Do you think that is too early?

(My plan for this week would be to bring them inside at night, and to keep the heat lamp off for the rest of the week.)

I think it'd be fine at four weeks. Maybe to try and get the use them to it you could put them out in a run during the day then bring them in at night this week? That way you can tell if they are feeling cold during the day, and make your judgment based on that. I, by a rule decide that if a chick has a fully feathered chest it can go outside. We don't really get temperatures below ten even in winter over here though.
They have been outside yesterday and been out a few hours today. But it is by far warmer outside than inside, so I'm sure they are not cold ;) But I think that goes with my feeling, I just don't want them to get sick.
Took me 15 minutes to catch them to go inside yesterday, they wanted to stay there ;)
Haha, sounds like they're doing well
I wouldn't worry about putting them outside then
I say go for it.

My 6 girls were *mostly* feathered and about 6 weeks old when I couldn't stand them inside anymore and booted them to the coop (with a heat lamp that they ignored) at the end of March in Connecticut. It was probably 60-65 during the day and 50 at night.
I was so worried, but my gut said to go for it and they were very happy to be outside.

Securing a heat lamp in your coop may also be an option. Just make sure it is unable to fall, those lamps will catch bedding on fire in a heartbeat. I found some great ideas in threads on this site in regards to that!

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