I'm wondering whether I'm being a horrible chick owner, or whether observation is the best guide, in regards to the "right" temperature for my 16-day-old Red Sussex cross chicks. For the past week, I've been taking half the flock at a time out into the back yard, in a dog air carrier, for a bit of fresh air, sunshine, and a change of scene. They're starting to anticipate going out, and it's harder to convince them that it's time to go back in the regular brooder, than it is to convince them that it's time for an outing. In the yard, they'll be eating and drinking and seeing who can climb highest on the branch in the carrier, or playing follow-the-leader, etc. They'll nap singly, nestled into the sawdust, or companionably together, but not in a shivering heap! They show interest in my comings and goings, and crowd at the front to see if I've brought them anything interesting, like a caterpillar. (I assume caterpillars are harmless treats, when I can find them, as they're mostly water...kind of like a Slurpee for chicks.) Now the thing is, the "instructions" say that at this age, the chicks should be kept at 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit. My two thermometers don't agree, but they suggest it's around 55 degrees F in the shade outside, and around 60 F in the brooder itself when the heat lamp's turned off, as it usually is during the day. Yet the chicks seem happy. Which should I believe--the piece of paper, or the chicks themselves?