So your chicks are several weeks old, and maybe you have them inside, and they are starting to stink am I right? Been there done that! So, let’s talk about How Long Baby Chicks Need Heat Lamp.
Everything I’ve read says to start at 95ºF and decrease by 5 degrees each week, until you reach 70ºF. That information about dropping the temperature might be helpful if you live in a cold climate, but what if you live in a warm climate and it rarely ever gets down to 70ºF?
To really understand when the right time to wean the baby chicks from the heat source, we need to know what it is that keeps them warm. We all know that chickens keep themselves warm with their feathers. The feathers act as a trap for heat in colder weather. In warmer weather they spread their feathers out a bit so that the heat can escape.
How Long Do Baby Chicks Need Heat Lamps?
At 8- 10 weeks, most chicks are feathered out, meaning their big girl and big boy feathers are mostly grown in. This helps protect them from the cool weather.
Hot Weather and Heat Lamps
When chicks are first born it’s suggested they stay around 95ºF. If you’re bringing them inside where the A/C is running, they will need a heat source, no matter how hot it is outside.
If you have them outside at two weeks old, and it’s 90ºF outside, you probably don’t need a heat source on at least during the daytime. Third week 85ºF, Fourth week 80ºF and so on…
Watch the nighttime temps closely, and turn on a heat source as necessary.
8- 10 weeks is about the norm. That’s how long Baby Chicks Need A Heat Lamp or preferably a safer heat source. There are many people who stop using a heat source at 8 weeks old. If they’re feathered out at 8 weeks then they should be just fine to go outside, even in colder weather. If it dips down super cold at night you might think about turning on a safe heat source for them then.
This is Angel. Known for her angelic like feathers. I believe she is 10 weeks old now. This is what they talk about when they say feathered out. Below, I’ll share an image of a chick that is not fully feathered yet.
This is Mohawk. He had a black stripe on his head when first hatched hence his name, Mohawk.
You can tell that his feathers are not quite grown in yet. He is a couple weeks younger than Angel. In two to three weeks, he should be fully feathered out.
Watch For Signs of Being Too Cold and Too Hot
- If you notice they are all huddled together, they may be a little chilly.
- If they are spread out, running around like crazy they are probably fine.
- If they are panting, and have their wings spread out they are hot.
Hopefully, this clarifies things for you. Now you know Baby Chicks Need Heat Lamps (or a safer heat source) for about 8-10 weeks. If you feel that they need heat for a little longer, then give it to them. Good luck with your baby chicks!
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