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when can chicks leave brooder?

Posted by cranberry15 Zone 5 WI (My Page) on
Tue, Jun 9, 09 at 10:09

I'm in SE Wisconsin and our spring temps have been ridiculous! My black austrolorp chix are 4 weeks old and I can just now see the feathers on their heads are starting to come in (rest of feathers are in). Our night time temps are STILL below 50 degrees. (forecast says nights will be mid 50's by the weekend) I've got a great little chicken tractor that I want to move them to until they're big enough to join my lonely hen in her pasture. The roosting area of the tractor is about 2.5 x 3 and there are only 5 chicks. Will they be warm enough at night if temps are in the upper 40's? Mid 50's? The brooder is getting a bit crowded and they're emptying their little waterer almost daily!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: when can chicks leave brooder?

Personally I would hesitate to put them in a tractor at their age. Not so much because of the temperature, but because of the spring rain/cold/chill combo.

If they are feathered I don't worry about supplemental heat, but in a tractor they will be on the low damp ground, in cooler weather. Sooo, I'd come up with a different plan, but that's just me. Unless your weather isn't as wet as ours is this time of year?

We have a wire cage hung with wire twine from the ceiling we use when we need it. Maybe something like that would work temporarily?


RE: when can chicks leave brooder?

I've heard after 6 weeks. This is based on starting them at 95 degrees, lowering their temp by 5 degrees every week, and then not needing supplemental heat after they are used to 70 degrees.

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