When to let chicks out daily?

Nate Caskey

In the Brooder
Sep 16, 2017
39
23
39
I have 19 seven week old chicks that are too big to be kept in there grow out coop all day long, they have an attached, fully covered, run but I live in Kansas City, Missouri. Our average high is in the mid 50's. Is this too cold to start letting them out daily?
 

Lady of McCamley

Free Ranging
10 Years
Mar 19, 2011
7,507
5,583
522
NW Oregon
I have 19 seven week old chicks that are too big to be kept in there grow out coop all day long, they have an attached, fully covered, run but I live in Kansas City, Missouri. Our average high is in the mid 50's. Is this too cold to start letting them out daily?

At 7 weeks of age, they should be fully off any heat, so they are fine.

I've got broody hatched babes that go out with momma in the snow at day 3 or 4, using her as a warming hutch in between excursions in their down coats. They would die without momma's body heat to warm them when they felt chilled.

However, by 4 to 5 weeks of age, chicks have fully feathered, so they are in the elements at all temps with shelter from direct storms.

The only reason to slow the progression is if you have artificially brooded with heat lamps. Then you do have to harden them to the cold.

You've got a covered run, so they'll be fine at that ambient temp....as long as they are off heat lamps.

LofMc
 

Nate Caskey

In the Brooder
Sep 16, 2017
39
23
39
At 7 weeks of age, they should be fully off any heat, so they are fine.

I've got broody hatched babes that go out with momma in the snow at day 3 or 4, using her as a warming hutch in between excursions in their down coats. They would die without momma's body heat to warm them when they felt chilled.

However, by 4 to 5 weeks of age, chicks have fully feathered, so they are in the elements at all temps with shelter from direct storms.

The only reason to slow the progression is if you have artificially brooded with heat lamps. Then you do have to harden them to the cold.

You've got a covered run, so they'll be fine at that ambient temp....as long as they are off heat lamps.

LofMc
I did brood them myself and they currently have a heat lamp that only comes on at night. Should I ditch the heat lamp entirely or keep shorting the amount of time that it comes on?
 

feedman77

Crowing
6 Years
Jun 10, 2013
2,933
2,469
281
I just put 18 6 week olds out in a chicken house with run attached. Deep straw on chicken house floor.

They have been off heat for 2 weeks in my unheated basement. Figure with straw and numbers they will be fine.

Only about an hour east of kc
 

Lady of McCamley

Free Ranging
10 Years
Mar 19, 2011
7,507
5,583
522
NW Oregon
I did brood them myself and they currently have a heat lamp that only comes on at night. Should I ditch the heat lamp entirely or keep shorting the amount of time that it comes on?

It's usually best to have them off heat completely before putting them into the outdoors, but you should be able to cut them back over a week to no heat and then set them out.

Watch them a couple of nights with no heat to make sure they don't look stressed in the cold.

Chicks are hardy as long as you haven't weakened them with too much heat during growth...sort of like hot house plants.

LofMc
 

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