when can 10 week old pullets go outside?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ryanhodapp, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. ryanhodapp

    ryanhodapp Songster

    May 5, 2010
    St. Louis
    It is freezing right now, and the girls are used to the basement at temps of about 65. when can they go outside? closer to the spring?
    I am ready for them to move out, but I am afraid of the cold.
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Are you creating the 65* temp. through the use of a heat lamp?

    If so, I would slowly decrease the temp. and have them outside on all but the nastiest days. Get them used to it slowly (over a period of a week or two) and then put them out.

    They should do fine in a draft free coop.
  3. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    I'm assuming at 65 degrees, that's just house temperatures - that you haven't been heating?? Although they're certainly old enough to go out, I'd still provide a bulb for them out there - gradually decreasing wattage - to help them become independent within 2-3 weeks. Maybe start with a 60W place for them to huddle (well secured with more than one wire and with plenty of clearance), and go down to a 40W the following week. Keep an eye on them to make sure they're adapting okay, which I'm sure they will as long as their housing is draft free and they have plenty of bedding.
  4. ryanhodapp

    ryanhodapp Songster

    May 5, 2010
    St. Louis
    no, the heat is from the furnace, so I cant decrease the temp without decreasing the whole house.
    Maybe if we get a 40 degree day, I can put them in garage for a few hours.
  5. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Oh, a garage makes it much easier. Can the brooder go out there for a week or two (even at night) and use the bulb progression out there??? Much safer than the coop, as I'd suggested.
  6. Merryment

    Merryment Chirping

    Jan 20, 2011
    Last year, I made a little hover out of a rectangle of 1x2s, then I put a top and sides of that foil covered bubble wrap on it and hung it out in the coop. Sides hung down about 3-4"; put a few slits on the side panels to make it easier for them to get in & out. Attach the insulating wrap with some duct sticky stuff *I can't use the word ta%e, apparently*. I used little eye hooks and some wire to suspend it. And so they don't try to perch on the top, I just put a tent of tin foil on top. I did this when transitioning the little chooks from inside to outside. It's a simple thing, but it works. They get under there when they're cold, and it reflects their body heat back to them. I think it might help you as you transition them, and you could even put it outside in their run when you move them out there. Hang it a little higher than they are tall. Good luck! And yes, this is my first post to BYC![​IMG]
  7. ryanhodapp

    ryanhodapp Songster

    May 5, 2010
    St. Louis
    Thanks Merryment. I am honored to have received your first post.
    All my chicks are in the garage--detached. (coop is in the garage, they go in and out a window to get outside.)
    I think I will move them out there in a few more weeks and try for a 30-40 degree night.
  8. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers


    How nice that your first post is one of assistance! That's the TRUE wealth of BYC as I know it! Welcome!!
  9. Judy

    Judy Crowing Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    They would be considered fully feathered at 8 weeks and ready to go out. You don't have to wait, but you should probably get them acclimated since they are used to a warm environment. I'd start exposing them now, even on a cold day.

    And welcome, Merryment!

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