When can they go outside in the cold?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by thegoldengirls1, Nov 7, 2016.

  1. thegoldengirls1

    thegoldengirls1 Just Hatched

    13
    0
    12
    Nov 7, 2016
    Hello,
    I have 2 orpingtons and 2 barnevelders that will be 8 weeks old this wendesday. I live in Gainesville, FL. They've been living in my bathroom, without heat but it usually only gets down to 75 at night in there. I read that it's safe to put them outside at 8 weeks but I wanted to make sure that they wouldn't get too cold. The lowest that its supposed to get this week is 46 degrees. The coop is a converted playhouse and they have their own nesting boxes stuffed with hay and the floor is play sand. I don't want the risk of fire by putting in a heat lamp so I want to make sure they will be okay without any heat out there. Thank you!!
     
  2. AllynTal

    AllynTal Chillin' With My Peeps

    541
    202
    166
    Aug 22, 2014
    Mississippi Gulf Coast
    OMG, put them outside! Mine go outside as soon as they come out of the incubator (with a heating pad, of course). At 8 weeks, they should have plenty of feathers and don't need supplemental heat. Cold to us is not the same as cold to a chicken. Chickens have a way to keep themselves warm that we can't do.

    And FYI, you don't want the chickens roosting in the nest boxes. The eggs will be poopy. Give them a proper roost and save the nest boxes for when they start laying.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2016
  3. amynrichie

    amynrichie Chillin' With My Peeps

    339
    22
    111
    Jan 29, 2013
    Nebraska Panhandle
    Your babies will be just fine without a heat lamp. Mine are only a week older and Nebraska nights have dipped down into the 20s.
     
  4. thegoldengirls1

    thegoldengirls1 Just Hatched

    13
    0
    12
    Nov 7, 2016
    Okay. Thank you!!
     
  5. Mellysa134

    Mellysa134 New Egg

    3
    0
    8
    Jan 23, 2015
    Owenton, KY
    Just wanted to let you know that you should not be using play sand. you should use aggregate sand that is used for mixing concrete, it is better for them and also provides grit.
     
  6. thegoldengirls1

    thegoldengirls1 Just Hatched

    13
    0
    12
    Nov 7, 2016
    I use the play sand because it's really fine so I can scoop the poop out with a litterbox scooper. I mix grit in their food. Would the aggregate sand be fine enough to still sift out the poop? What makes the play sand less healthy?
     
  7. AllynTal

    AllynTal Chillin' With My Peeps

    541
    202
    166
    Aug 22, 2014
    Mississippi Gulf Coast
    I use construction (or All-Purpose) sand mixed with Sweet PDZ in my coop. That may be the same as 'aggregate sand'. Different sources can call it by different names. It is fine enough to scoop, but course enough to not compact. I wrapped some 1/4-inch hardware cloth around the tines of an ensilage pitchfork and I use it like a giant litter scoop to clean the coop. I have 30 chickens in the coop (lots of poop everyday) and it's really quick and easy to scoop the sand clean.

    Play sand is too fine and will compact. There's also something about play sand that makes it bad for them to eat it. I don't remember what that is. I just remember when I was researching using sand, it stuck in my head "Don't get Playsand!."
     
  8. thegoldengirls1

    thegoldengirls1 Just Hatched

    13
    0
    12
    Nov 7, 2016
    Thank you for the info! I'm going to look for the construction sand and the sweet pdz!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by