When can I move my chicks from the brooder to the coop outside?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by llhirsh, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. llhirsh

    llhirsh New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Aug 24, 2009
    Georgia
    My chicks (8) were delivered on Sept 15th. So they are almost 4 wks old. I have them all in the same big Rubbermaid type box. The weather has been nice here lately so I put them out in the yard during the day (is that okay???) and then I bring them back in at night. How old do they need to be before I put them outside permanently? My husband is building a coop for them...

    Is it okay that I let them stay out in the yard all day? I put their food and water out there, but they seem to just eat grass and catch bugs and ignore their food.

    Are they heat sensitive? I put them in the sun, thinking they would like it and they all started acting like they were going to pass out and die. They were waddling around with their mouths open and then just laying down in the grass with their wings spread out. I moved them to the shade and they seemed to recover. btw... it was only in the low 80s in ATL today.

    I'm just a little worried that they are more fragile than I think, but at the same time I thought it would be nice to give them a break from the box!?!?!

    Any thoughts are appreciated! Thanks!
     
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    28,907
    115
    408
    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    If they are four weeks old now, they need to have consistent temps. of 75 to 80 degrees and perhaps a little cooler. If you can maintain that temp. even at night in your coop then they can go out.
    I didn't brood my chicks in the house. They've always been outside, from the day I got them. Takes a little work to get everything set up to keep them warm, but no more work then continuously cleaning the dust they create in the house.
    As far as being outside during the day, if they are safe from predators then they are fine. Always provide a shade area to get out of the sun. Panting and spreading their wings are ways they use to cool down. They need shade.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2009
  3. bigoakhunter

    bigoakhunter Chillin' With My Peeps

    553
    1
    131
    Jul 29, 2009
    Michigan
    Agree with gritsar!

    Mine were 2 1/2 weeks old when they went from brooder box in basement to outside coop. As long as you have electricity and a light so you can regulate temps. they should be fine. 5 degrees lower on temp each week.
     
  4. llhirsh

    llhirsh New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Aug 24, 2009
    Georgia
    So at what point can I stop worrying about the temperature?
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2009
  5. gkeesling

    gkeesling Chillin' With My Peeps

    398
    0
    129
    Nov 24, 2008
    Hagerstown, IN
    I moved mine out to the coop when they were 5 weeks. Just be sure they can get out of the sun to some shade, and vice versa, when they want to.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by