1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

When to move chicks out to the coop

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Craxe77, May 4, 2016.

  1. Craxe77

    Craxe77 Out Of The Brooder

    11
    0
    22
    Apr 30, 2016
    We are first timers here and have 6 chicks that are living in a large dog cage in my basement. They are about 4-5 weeks now and are doing well. My shed to coop conversion is done and I was wondering when I should move them out. I will move the red heat lamp out with them when we move them.

    I'm worried that the shed is so large and its about 40 degrees out at night right now. If I place the lamp near the floor will they huddle near it if they get cold or will they just roost high away from it and freeze? They aren't fully feathered yet. They have wing, back, some breast feathers but aren't completely feathered out yet.
     
  2. mimsy

    mimsy Chillin' With My Peeps

    160
    26
    103
    Mar 9, 2012
    They should be fully feathered by now and ready to go. I wouldn't use a heat lamp though, rather dangerous and not needed.

    Have you been moving the heat lamp up each week? If so they should be at the point of not needing it at all now.
     
  3. Craxe77

    Craxe77 Out Of The Brooder

    11
    0
    22
    Apr 30, 2016
    I have been moving it up every week or so. The temp varies but they never seem to pile up or move way away from it. I placed an old handrail across the bars of the cage and they were all roosting on it tonight except for one who was roosting on a lower one.
     
  4. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Once they are fully feathered they should be ready to go outside. The heat lamp probably isn't needed, if they get cold they will huddle. If you really feel that they need the heat lamp, then hang the lamp in the coop not as a heat lamp but as a heat source for the coop. The heat from the lamp will maintain an even warmth in the whole coop, no need to maintain a brooder setup once they are feathered and outside.

    [​IMG]

    My current flock have been outside for almost a week now. The chicks were hatched the first week of April and are fully feathered. They love being outside and I love that they love being outside.

    [​IMG]

    They greet me every morning when I open the coop for the day. Night time temps here in Colorado have been in the low 40"s to upper 30's. Their body heat keeps them warm inside the coop, and if they get cold they snuggle. If you don't keep Feed Hoppers & Waterers in the coop with the chicks, make sure that they get a nice drink of water before they are locked up for the night.

    I put them away each night at around sunset. They will complain and make noise, they are not ready for bed and will want to stay up longer...some people's kids.

    At this stage they are still learning about the world around, everything is going to be new to them for the next year.

    Your biggest concern once they are first outside is wet weather, wet cold chicks are dead chicks. I was late getting my little ones outside this year due to the rains we've been having lately. (Even more rain forecast for this weekend) If it rains, your little ones may or may not know to seek shelter. So if weather rolls in, you will want to be around to ensure that the chicks stay dry and out of the weather.
     
  5. Husker Chick

    Husker Chick Out Of The Brooder

    23
    1
    24
    Mar 17, 2016
    I had read somewhere that if you keep chicks too warm without letting them adjust to cold, they are very slow to feather. Colder temps encourage the feathering.
     
  6. scrambled please

    scrambled please Out Of The Brooder

    84
    4
    38
    Nov 30, 2010
    I put mine out in the day at 4 weeks and all night around 6 weeks, I use heat to take the chill out of the coop for a couple weeks.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by