When its 34ºC outside, is it right to spray your chickens with a hose set to "mist"?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Chookepie, Nov 21, 2015.

  1. Yes

    1 vote(s)
  2. No

    0 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Chookepie

    Chookepie In the Brooder

    Nov 13, 2015
    Queensland, Australia
    All of my chooks today were out in the hot sun, so, as i'm in Australia, I sprayed my chooks with water. Was that the right thing to do, or should I have done something else?
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Can't hurt.
    Shade is critical and foot baths are welcome.
  3. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Crowing

    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    I change water frequently during the dog days of summer. The plastic water fountains break down in the sun so never last and metal water fountains heat up quick. Shade and fresh cold water is key. Most breeds don't do well in extreme heat. Not that 90F (32C) is extreme but the high end where I live. Lost a black bird once to mid summer heat. Wasn't diligent enough changing out the water.
  4. appps

    appps Crowing

    Aug 29, 2012
    I don't really worry till it starts heading to the high 30's /40's. Up till then they have always been fine with plenty of drinking water and shade.

    When it gets up in those high temps I then mist but not the birds but rather the air around them, it's surprising how much cooler the air becomes with even a slight breeze blowing through misters. I just have some black poly pipe with misters I set up on a timer to come on for 5 minutes every 10 minutes. Got us through a 45c (113F) day a couple years back with no problems.

    Had 41c on Friday and haven't set the misters up yet as that's way above the average for this time of year (today was back to 22c) so just stood with the hose misting and wetting the run down. I didn't spray t he birds because they panic a bit when it gets too near them and as they were already mouth breathing from the heat I didn't think chasing them with the hose and making them stress or have to breath even heavier would help. In fact think it could have done more harm than good.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2015
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    I agree, don’t spray your chickens directly. There are other ways to help them cool off. Misters or swamp coolers really help. They will often stand in shallow water to help cool off as long as the water is not hot. I wet the ground in the shade. Evaporation cools the ground. They like to lay there. With these, they have the option to cool off if they wish.

    You don’t want to make a wet sloppy run or coop, that can lead to disease problems. But damp or one that dries out is OK. Just not consistently soaking muddy wet.

    There is no one set temperature when you need to start paying attention to this. That’s going to depend on what kind of facilities and shade they have. Some buildings or even shade under trees can be a lot cooler than others. But once they start acting hot, it’s probably time to do something.
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Is it humid out or dry where you are?
    Misting works good in dry climates, doesn't help at all in humid ones due to lack of the evaporation that helps cool.

    ETA: Funny to be talking about hot weather when it's 34F here and we are in the middle of our first 4-8 inches of snow storm.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2015
  7. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    I agree with Aart - I was thinking, Good grief, they are going to freeze to death, then I saw the celsius.

    I agree with Ridgerunner, I live in sand, and often dump the old water out, they can dig in that and take a damp dustbath. However, it is sand, not the least bit muddy.

    Shade and enough water is important, most hens will do fine with that.

    Mrs K
  8. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    When it's real hot here, I try to let my girls out to free range during mid day, b/c they can scoot into the woods a bit or under a shrub, and have more options to find a cooler place. But with recent predation issues, that's not ALWAYS an option. It's always cooler in the woods under the trees.

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