Syncing the Flock!!!..?? help! :)

Keeniebird

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 8, 2012
66
1
43
Puyallup Wa.
Hi all, I had my 6 6/7 week old babies in a brooder box mesh to mesh with my coop and run which is home to my 5adult bantams. (1 roo 4 hens) they are very docile sweet birds. Anyhow today we went for it and put everyone in together. It is a large run. The bantams for the most part ignored the chicks ( by the way they are all pretty much same size) if they got too close one of the hens or the roo would give a minor rebuke and go right back to what they were doing. Early evening all the babies were in the coop and so were 3 adult hens. The hens were chilling on their favorite shelf up top and were not in the least concerned with the little ones. Then at dusk in came the roo and the last hen. The babies squished into a corner and waited for the two to jump up in the bed with the others. The adults acted fine with them... It seemed they just wanted to go to bed. The babies then decided they wanted to play in the yard and out they filed... I let them run around and then it was getting quite dark and cool. I rounded them up and put them in the coop. Our run is completely enclosed in netting and is safe from predators. We don't lock the birds in at night. The door is open.... My question is, is it safe that I lock them in? I covered the door because I don't want the youngins to go out and not go back in and freeze their buns off. Everyone is sleeping now... With a infrared bullb for little ones if they want to get under it. ....so what do you think?? Should I leave door open for an escape?
Thanks!
My profile has pics of my coop... The side you can see through to is a screen door and is closed at night. Just the ramp door stays open
 

sumi

Égalité
Staff member
Premium member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,157
25,176
1,302
Tipperary, Ireland
Unless it's cold at night I don't think you'll need a heat lamp. But I would suggest closing the door. Lots of predators come out at night to hunt when there are no human activity. If you're worried about them being cooped up get up early to release them. But it sounds like the adults are fine with them.
 

Keeniebird

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 8, 2012
66
1
43
Puyallup Wa.
Thanks, just looked this morn.... Everyone a-ok. ;)
I wondered about the heat lamp too. They have all the feathers since they are 6 to 7 weeks.
Old... I think the coldest it is getting now is around 50.
Thanks for the feedback. :)
 

Ridgerunner

Free Ranging
11 Years
Feb 2, 2009
24,538
13,036
707
Southeast Louisiana
Last fall, I took my 5 week olds out of the brooder in the coop and put them in an unheated grow-out coop. When they were 5-1/2 weeks old, the over-night low was in the mid-20's. They were fine. You don't need that heat lamp at that age at 50 degrees. All it is is a fire hazard. It's not helping them.

Whether or not you leave the door open depends on your confidence in how predator-proof your run is. Runs are often harder to predator-proof than coops, but it can be done. Many predators are more active at night and they have more undisturbed time to do their mischief. If you have the confidence in your run, leaving the door open is fine, but I was not around when you built it so I didn't see your construction techniques. That is your decision.

I agree with Sumi that if you lock them in the coop, it is a good idea to get up early and open that door, at least until you build up your confidence that they will be OK.
 

Keeniebird

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 8, 2012
66
1
43
Puyallup Wa.
Thanks, yes I believe you are right. I will only use the lamp if it gets really cold. And I will lock them in at night just to be safe. My biggest concern was one of my big ones flipping on them over night and getting them cornered. But so far the behavior has been pretty civil. :) Enough warning of who's boss and that was pretty much it yesterday. Let's hope it continues.

Thanks! ;)
 
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