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warming lights or no lights

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by memphisgirl, Apr 8, 2017.

  1. memphisgirl

    memphisgirl Just Hatched

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    Mar 14, 2017
    I have 4 baby chicks now 6 weeks old, 2 Silver lace Wyandottes 2 Easter Eggers, our plan is to transfer them to the coop at 8 weeks, alot of people are saying no warming lights needed, they have feathers, worried that they will get chilled being I am in Washington state where 40s at night is common, I am a first time chicken owner, any advice is appreciated
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    This is a very common question this time of year. To me there are few qualifications to this. Have they been acclimated at all, exposed just a bit to cooler temperatures? I raise mine in a brooder in the coop, a large brooder where one end stays warm but the far end gets pretty cold, sometimes below freezing. Mine are acclimated. Some people that brood in the house take their chicks out for excursions in cooler weather, allowing them to peck at the ground and get used to being outside. They are often amazed at how much cold those chicks can take, even long before they feather out.

    I feed mine a 20% protein Starter feed for the first month or so, then cut back to a lower protein feed. That higher protein really helps them feather out faster, by four weeks mine are normally pretty well feathered out.

    My grow-out coop has great ventilation up high and stays dry, but has great wind protection down low where the chicks are. Wind is not a problem.

    I regularly take mine off supplemental heat at five weeks of age even if the overnight low is in the mid 20’s F. I probably could do that earlier but I like to be cautious.

    Even if you fail to acclimate them, feed them a fairly low protein diet, and maybe your coop isn’t great with ventilation and breeze control, yours would probably do great at 8 weeks. With decent ventilation and breeze control they’d probably do great now at six weeks. No supplemental heat required.
     
  3. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    My chicks are brooded in the outdoor coop. They wean themselves off heat at 4 weeks. I'm guessing my weather is colder than yours. Often my chicks are in 30's to 40's at night. As long as they have a well ventilated, but draft free coop, they should be fine, even at 6 weeks. You do need to harden them off by putting them out for a few days, and bringing them in at night (no heat) before their first jammie party in the coop.
     
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    I routinely have my chicks off heat and outside by 4 weeks old.
     
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  5. memphisgirl

    memphisgirl Just Hatched

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    Mar 14, 2017
    thanks that helps alot
     
  6. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    I brood in an unfinished room with a concrete floor that keeps the ambient temp at about 40 to 50 degrees, year round. Just right for getting chicks used to outdoor temps. I also don't use a heat lamp, but a heating pad as their heat source, so the rest of the brooder doesn't get warmed at all and they are used to a normal day/night cycle from the start.
     

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