Winter chicks

wbommarito

Hatching
5 Years
Oct 12, 2014
3
0
7
St. Louis
Hey folks. Just joining BYC and excited to get rolling. I'm in St. Louis (Midwest) and I have raised chickens before, but it has been about 6 years and I'm a little rusty. We just got our hands on 7 new chicks. About 2 weeks old. My question is what is the best way to proceed with these chicks with regard to weather and health/safety. Here in stl our winters can be brutal and I want to take the best care of the chicks as I can... But here is the kicker: my new wife is pregnant and I need them out of the house as soon as possible. How old before they are strong enough for the cold? Any good resources out there or advice?
Thanks so much!
 

Toddrick

Songster
5 Years
Sep 28, 2014
1,251
108
156
Indiana
Can't you keep them in the garage? My first eggs are going to hatch in two weeks, and my plan is the garage. Once they are mostly feathered I was advised that they could go into the coop, even if it is snowing out. I plan on using a large dog crate (bunny cage would be about the same) to keep them in after the brooder. Yup, that's the plan anyways, but I'll watch to see what others say here too, and adjust as necessary!
 
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wbommarito

Hatching
5 Years
Oct 12, 2014
3
0
7
St. Louis
I was thinking about keeping them in the garage too. I just did not know if the cold would be too much for juvenile chickens. Or if they are good to go once they have all of their feathers. Are there any good resources or advice on how to handle a small group of chicks hatched right before winter?
 

wbommarito

Hatching
5 Years
Oct 12, 2014
3
0
7
St. Louis
400

These are my 7 chicks: 2 barred rocks. 2 buff orpingtons. 2 silver laced wyandottes. And 1 aracauna.
 

LanceTN

Chirping
5 Years
Aug 31, 2014
189
16
68
I was thinking about keeping them in the garage too. I just did not know if the cold would be too much for juvenile chickens. Or if they are good to go once they have all of their feathers. Are there any good resources or advice on how to handle a small group of chicks hatched right before winter?


Right before winter? If your chicks are two weeks old they'll be six weeks old and fully feathered before winter actually starts. You're in St Louis, not St Paul.

I think you are seriously over estimating the severity of your winter and under estimating a chickens ability to survive it.

Mine are currently three weeks old and I rarely keep them with the brood lamp on.

Give them shelter from drafts, so something with solid walls if it's in a drafty garage, soft bedding and a brood lamp you can turn on when it gets to chilly for them. Once winter really comes yours will be old enough to go outside in a coop.
 
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masloozinit76

In the Brooder
5 Years
Feb 19, 2014
48
4
26
If you can get an old pack and play or playpen, I would switch them to that until they are feathered enough to go outside. It has much higher walls and more room :)
 

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