At what age should chicks be separated from their mother when it's cold and dark outside? Back in late October - early November, one of our hens hatched a bunch of chickens. This was our first time with a broody hen. Perhaps we should have not let her sit in the nest but after considering the pros and cons we decided to let her be. We did a number of other things wrong, too, but in the end we had nine baby chicks hatching out over a period of 7-8 days. Of course, now we have the problem of a bunch of small chicks growing up in winter (we're in Sweden). They're 5-6 weeks old, and the weather has suddenly turned quite cold (-12C/10F), it's often windy and the days are very short. Until now we've had mum + chicks in their own separate area of the hen house, but over the last few days mum has started acting up: instead of sitting on the ground keeping them warm she's often been roosting on one of the shelves up the top for part of the day. Earlier today another hen got into their section and attacked a few of the chicks and mum didn't rush to defend them. She has also laid a couple of eggs. And when I went down to shut them all in for the night, I saw that mama hen wasn't letting them get to the water, but was pecking at them. So I picked her up and moved her to the main area with the rest of the flock, and the chicks immediately went to drink. I am guessing this means that our hen is done raising chicks and wants to be with the grown ups again? I am worried that now winter is really settled in that the chicks won't thrive. The coop is insulated with minimal heating but a few mornings the indoor water has been slushy. The coop temperature most of the time is around 5C or below. The brooding area is shut off from the rest so the chicks can't get outside and can only mingle with the adults if we let them. Any advice going forward? Should we put more heating in there? Will they be ok without mum around to warm them? Do I need more heating indoors? At what age will they be ready to go outside? Will it hurt their eyesite if they only have infra red lighting for most of the day (plus some sunlight for a few hours)? I have so many questions that I hope you all can give me some advice about! Thanks in advance.