What age are they safe in the run alone?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Hamstery, May 29, 2012.

  1. Hamstery

    Hamstery Songster

    Feb 7, 2012
    New England
    We have four baby chicks, 5 weeks old tomorrow. They moved out to the coop this weekend. We let them out in the run during the day while we were outside to supervise. They love it and have been having small trips out there for some time.
    Back to work today so no one is home most of the day. They were begging to come out this morning. But I'm not sure when it's safe to let them roam the run all day alone. It's secured on all four sides and the top with chicken wire. And the wire is buried on all sides as well. We don't have any loose dogs in the neighborhood and I would think that any other predators would only be out at night ( when they are safe in the coop) , but correct me if I am wrong please.
    We had four adult hens in the same run every day with no issues for many months, but i am worried because the babies are so small.
    When did you leave your chicks in the run unsupervised?
  2. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    I think they'll be fine. At this age, provided the weather is warm, they should be able to run in and out of the coop, into their enclosed run, all day long.
  3. robynz

    robynz In the Brooder

    Mar 18, 2012
    I would think they would be fine - I left my 4 week olds home alone in my yard yesterday for 4 hours (we don't have the wire up in the run yet) They don't wander far :)
  4. Hellinahelmet

    Hellinahelmet In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2012
    They ought to be fine at this age, barring any bizarre cold weather.
  5. Hamstery

    Hamstery Songster

    Feb 7, 2012
    New England
    They haven't learned to go back IN by themselves and I don't know yet how well they can maneuver the ramp. So I will start letting them out each night this week before dark and see how they do with that.
    Thanks for your replies. I will feel better about leaving them out now. They just seem so small.
  6. nakstk

    nakstk Songster

    Sep 19, 2011
    Kalama, Washington
    I have 3 that will be 5 weeks old tomorrow and was going to ask the same question. I will keep a light on them if it get to cold at night but I want them to be able to adjust to being outside. They have been in our garage since we got them. The only thing I am worried about is the grass. I don't have any grit small enough for them and their coop and run is out in the grass.
  7. wantbantams

    wantbantams Chirping

    Apr 14, 2012
    They will eat grass and dirt and should be fine with no grit.
  8. bj taylor

    bj taylor Songster

    Oct 28, 2011
    North Central Texas
    my only hesitation would be that chicken wire is very penetrable by predators. perhaps you live in an area w/low numbers of predators & it will be fine.
  9. GardenGal

    GardenGal Songster

    Mar 11, 2011
    Western WA
    I would be nervous about predators too, unless you live in a very urban area. I've seen raccoons and coyotes about at all hours, not to mention hawks and eagles, and we live within the city limits of a small/medium town. Also, I really recommend hardware cloth because rodents LOVE chicken food, and that's just a nasty problem. Sorry to be the voice of doom, just want to spare you potential heartache.
  10. Hamstery

    Hamstery Songster

    Feb 7, 2012
    New England
    I have been thinking a lot about the run and I think I want to cover it all with 2x4 welded wire. Opinions?

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