When to Keep Chicks Outside

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Momtofive86, Jul 2, 2019.

  1. Momtofive86

    Momtofive86 In the Brooder

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    First time chick 'mom' and new member! I have 4, 3 1/2 week old Easter Egger's that are feathering nicely. I live in Nor Cal where daytime temps are 90+ and night time lows are 60ish. I have been taking my four chicks out about nine in the morning and leaving them in the run that is attached to a coop till about 8:00 at night. They are roosting during the day, eating well and seem to be thriving. Will they be able to stay outside before they are 6 weeks since it's summertime or should I keep them in the crate in the house at night under the heat lamp? I don't want to make any mis-steps but they don't seem to appreciate being brought back in and cooped up in a plastic crate. Any help will be greatly appreciated!
     
    penny1960 and trumpeting_angel like this.
  2. trumpeting_angel

    trumpeting_angel Crowing

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    Do they still "use" the heat lamp? Or are they huddled in the opposite corner to cool off? Do they go into the coop in the daytime or straight to the run? If the coop is protected from breezes, they might be okay in there. People with (lots) more experience than I will offer useful opinions! I am pretty new myself; my pullets just went outside a week ago (late because the coop wasn't finished. I'm in Vermont and our nights are still pretty cool even now. I think they would have been ready at 6-7 weeks but they were 9 weeks by the time they moved out. I didn't have a heat lamp but used a Mama Heating Pad (lots of info here about this), but they had quit by 5 weeks (indoors).

    Welcome to BYC! So glad to have you here! Do post a thread on the Introductions page. Be patient; I'm sure you'll get more useful advice from others!

    :welcome
     
    penny1960 likes this.
  3. Momtofive86

    Momtofive86 In the Brooder

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    Thanks for your response and warm welcome! They don't actually 'use' the heat lamp. I have it about three feet up and away from their crate just to give them the light and added warmth. Our house stays at about 77 at night. The coop is protected from breezes and I just put them straight away into the run. They go on into the coop during the day off and on by themselves but roost on a branch out in their run.
     
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  4. trumpeting_angel

    trumpeting_angel Crowing

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    You could start by weaning them from the heat lamp. 77 should be fine for them; I'm sure yours, like mine, sleep in a pile. 3 1/2 weeks seems pretty young, but then, many here will describe their broody hens raising chicks outdoors in all kinds of weather. They duck under mom when cold, then go back to running around hilariously. How about a picture so we can enjoy . . . I mean assess their level of feathering out? ;-)
     
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  5. penny1960

    penny1960 Going back to La La Land

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    They can be out in those temps is your coop secure ??
     
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  6. Momtofive86

    Momtofive86 In the Brooder

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    trumpeting_angel I will post a pic in the morning! I need to figure out how to do it.
    Penny1960, yes the coop is secure with a door that locks.
     
    trumpeting_angel likes this.
  7. trumpeting_angel

    trumpeting_angel Crowing

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    Just click on "Upload a File" when you're typing (it's just below), find the photo on your device, click on it . . . if you're on my phone with lousy internet service, approximately 4 minutes go by and it's loaded! It won't load videos; one has to load their video to YouTube or someplace and link to it on BYC.

    Anyhow, Penny has lots more experience so I'm really glad she posted!
     
  8. Momtofive86

    Momtofive86 In the Brooder

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    That sounds pretty simple, I will give it a try when the chicks get up in the morning!
     
    trumpeting_angel likes this.
  9. trumpeting_angel

    trumpeting_angel Crowing

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    Oh, yes, easy. And purely for scientific purposes. Nobody here loves looking at pictures of chicks being hilarious. Not here. :jumpy
     
  10. sunrise.superman

    sunrise.superman Chirping

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    My latest little batch (bought for a 2 weeks broody hen that became unbroody the day after I got chicks, of course) was brooded in a dog crate in the garage with a seedling mat heat cave and I put them out 3 weeks ago at 4 weeks old. Some feathers but not completely by any means. I'm in Northern CO and we're just now feeling like summer...cool and wet June. Mine have done great. I made sure they had draft-free place to "roost" and now week 3 of being out 24/7 (free range large back yard and small coop while I build my big one) they've been roosting with the rest of the crew.
     
    trumpeting_angel likes this.

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