It can get extremely hot here in the South during the late spring and summer. Keeping your birds from getting too hot is very important if you want to keep your herd happy and healthy!
Grown chickens, just like grown people have an easier time being able to regulate their body temperature. Babies, not so much. Baby chickens that are a week or less old need to stay at 95 degrees and need to be out of the sun at all times. As the weeks go by the less heat they need and their ability to withstand the sunshine increases.
Having a good setup for your birds makes achieving this environment for them a lot easier. On our place, we keep the chicks separate from the grown and teenager chickens. They have a heat lamp in their coop that stays on all night and in the morning for a few hours while it’s still cooler. They have shade at all times of the day and access to water and food all day as well. What has made the biggest difference for them has been putting a fan just outside of their coop, so they have good air flow in the coop and in their shade spot.
Having a mister in the pen is a great option too. Having that little bit of water on them with the breeze of the fan is a great combination. Another way to help keep them cool is by giving them ice blocks to peck at or frozen watermelon slices. It’s cool and hydrating!
You can give the ice treats to the adult chickens as well. If you let your big chicken’s free range, they can find shade when they need it. Just make sure they have plenty of water and food and they are good to go.