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Use of heat lamp in the South

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by FlewTheCoop, Jan 29, 2009.

  1. FlewTheCoop

    FlewTheCoop In the Brooder

    Jan 14, 2009
    Hi! I searched for tips on this topic, but nothing specific to my situation popped up.

    I will be brooding only three or four chicks come March. I'm in Mississippi, where temps are usually in the 60s at that time of year, but I will be keeping my babies indoors.

    I have seen various information about heat lamps...such as what bulbs to use, and what wattage. Some people swear you can us a low wattage bulb, others say you MUST get a 250 watt infrared heat bulb.

    Does it really matter, as long as the interior temp of the brooder is correct? It seems like a 250 watt heat bulb will be too much for this climate, not to mention more expensive to run.

    And, is red better than white for the chicks internal clocks? I'm not sure how that works...but it seems like keeping a white bulb on them at night might screw them up somehow. haha.

    Forgive my ignorance. I am new to all this! Thanks for any tips or hints.
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member 11 Years

    I never use a 250w for chicks unless I've had to put them out in a coop early, like 2-3 weeks old. In a house, a 125 watt heat lamp in a cool area like a bsmt is adequate. In a heated home, you can get away with a 100 watt bulb or even a 75 watt, as long as they seem comfy.
  3. congdon476

    congdon476 GaLLiNa LOcA

    Dec 31, 2008
    Pueblo Area
    I currently use a 100 watt bulb in my brooder, placed at an accurate height to create the correct temperature. Sometimes I switch it out for a lower watt as they need less heat. No special colors, just a house light...they are kept in our basement that's finished and heated.
  4. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    Aug 25, 2008
    Hello, and [​IMG] !

    I'm in SC- in the past, when raising day old chicks, I have used a 100 watt bulb with no ill effects. But I start mine in a rather small covered cage, in the spare bedroom. I let the chicks tell me if they're too hot or cold.

    I now have the infrared heat lamp, but it's too big for the cage I use. I reduce the wattage of the bulb as they grow, and when I'm down to 40 watts, I use a red party bulb. That's when I move them to a larger cage, too.

    I read somewhere years ago that chickens don't see in the red area of the spectrum, but I don't know if that's true.

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