When to let baby chicks Free Range

AlaskanGirl

In the Brooder
Jun 4, 2020
2
12
18
Anchorage, AK
I have 4 chicks that are 5 weeks old. They were raised in a XL Dog Kennel in the house until last night. For the last week we would carry them out and let the chicks play all day in the closed up run and return to the house at night. Last night we let them sleep with the older chickens in the roost. Got up bright and early, let the big girls out to play and left the babies in the run again, locked up. Before chicks, I would keep the run door open all hours and let the big girls go in and out as they pleased. How long should the baby chicks be contained in the locked up pin before I can open the door and let them out? I have a large wooded yard, and while predators are a concern I am more focused on whether they will come back to the run/coop on their own if I let them out. Any advise? Food and water are in the run.
 

FortCluck

Hatch-a-Long Queen
Sep 9, 2019
21,382
93,378
1,317
Central Virginia
Keep them in their home (coop) for about a week. You can then let them go with the older chickens and the should return with the rest when it gets dark. If you have predators be very careful letting them out because those will be the first that they go after. They are easier to catch for a predator than a full grown chicken.

They will follow your full grown chickens and learn everything they have learned as they get older.
 

ChickForLife

Walking my Chicken
Apr 22, 2020
6,380
27,489
866
🌲Connecticut🌲
Keep them in their home (coop) for about a week. You can then let them go with the older chickens and the should return with the rest when it gets dark. If you have predators be very careful letting them out because those will be the first that they go after. They are easier to catch for a predator than a full grown chicken.

They will follow your full grown chickens and learn everything they have learned as they get older.
I don't have full grown chickens now?
 

momma chickie

Songster
May 6, 2016
173
119
126
I have 4 chicks that are 5 weeks old. They were raised in a XL Dog Kennel in the house until last night. For the last week we would carry them out and let the chicks play all day in the closed up run and return to the house at night. Last night we let them sleep with the older chickens in the roost. Got up bright and early, let the big girls out to play and left the babies in the run again, locked up. Before chicks, I would keep the run door open all hours and let the big girls go in and out as they pleased. How long should the baby chicks be contained in the locked up pin before I can open the door and let them out? I have a large wooded yard, and while predators are a concern I am more focused on whether they will come back to the run/coop on their own if I let them out. Any advise? Food and water are in the run.

My experience, if they have been roosting with the other birds they will go in on their own at night.
 

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