The chicks didn’t have to grow much to outgrow the box we originally had them in – we picked up small rubber tub for feed/water from the feed store and they were doing just fine in that for about a week.
Meanwhile I was quickly repairing the coop. The door needed repair for sure… cleaned out, a few other minor repairs, and a good coat of paint.
By day 11 they were really just way too crowded in that feed bin… besides they really needed their bedding changed! We fixed up the coop as best we could and added some empty cardboard boxes (put together) around the outside walls of the coop to keep them confined to a smaller space and help insulate them. We put up three heat lamps, suspended their feed and water and put some new woodchips on the floor… it looked great!
We moved the chicks out to the coop… they were sure excited (or stressed out – depending on how you interpret their chirping. Either way, after being in their new space for a few minutes they were loving it!!
I was a bit nervous that with the stress from moving and the really cool nights we were getting that there would be a problem – they would die. When chicks get cold they huddle together and can suffocate the poor little chick on the bottom. In short, chick piles are deadly. I rounded out the corners of their pen with cardboard (recommendation from my Dad) to take away the corners and hopefully increase their odds for making it through the night.
While I was setting things up I broke the thermometor so I didn’t know if the lamp setup was warm enough (later I found out it was about 100 degrees)! We were worried, but Tristan volunteered to sleep out with the chicks. One of his friends (Alex) slept out by their goat pen for a few nights when they first got their new goats in the spring, so Tristan thought the least he could do is hang out with some chicks.
He was back in the house by 10:30PM.
It turns out they did just fine. I’ve tweaked the lights a bit here and there, making it much more reasonable during the day, but I don’t know how cold it gets in there during the cool night hours. I think they’re fine though considering it seems to be about 30 degrees warmer around the lamps than outside of the coop.