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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey Everyone,
I think by next week the birds will be able to be moved to the loft. The flight pen is not yet done or really started...

Anyways, my birds are use to being kept at 68-70 degrees. On average it is about 45 degrees during the day..the high point being 50 degrees. It is now starting to drop in the 30's at night.

Now this coming week fo three days it will be in the 60's..night temps in the 40's.

My pigeons, have been indoors and are not use to the outdoor temps.
How can I acclimate them to the temps outside???

I don't want to shock them or make them sick. We have a back porch that is about 10 degrees cooler than the indoor temps... I could stick them out there in dog crates/kennels (ones for the birds)...if that would help.

I don't yet now how cold that loft is for sure at this time, I have to get a thermometer out there.

Should I just wait till spring??

Any advice is more then welcomed.

Thank You,
Hilly
 

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IMO, if their not use to the outside temps, I'd wait until spring to move them out. Their bodies need time to build up to it.
If I have to have a bird inside for treatment or anything during late summer or fall, I leave them inside until the following spring because they haven't had time to acclimate to the cold weather.
 

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Hey Hilly. Back in Ireland my birds was use to colder temps. Pigeons are ok to be kept in colder temperatures. If you want you could put them out during the day then bring them in at night then once use to it, you can leave them out at night. In my opinion though they will be perfectly fine. I am sure other people will be along with there opinions. Best of luck.
 

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I don't know how long they have been inside, but if they have been inside for years then I would say an Indiana Winter might be alittle hard for them to get use to so quickly, but maybe if its anything like the east coast we are gong back up to the high 60's next week. You also don't say how many pigeons you have, if it just a hand full then i would keep them inside until spring, if its 20-30 of them, then I would understand not wanting to wait until spring. Plus, I'm alittle crazy, I don't like seeing any animal out in the cold. mindy
 

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I don't know how long they have been inside, but if they have been inside for years then I would say an Indiana Winter might be alittle hard for them to get use to so quickly, but maybe if its anything like the east coast we are gong back up to the high 60's next week. You also don't say how many pigeons you have, if it just a hand full then i would keep them inside until spring, if its 20-30 of them, then I would understand not wanting to wait until spring. Plus, I'm alittle crazy, I don't like seeing any animal out in the cold. mindy
He only has 6 pet pigeons.
 

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After I wrote that, I found his other thread and found out. Thank you. I would keep them inside until spring and maybe let them out to the loft on nice days but then bring them back in for the night. I've been in winters in the midwest, and they aren't fun. Just like the east coast where I'm at now. not fun!! mindy
 

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Bringing them in and out every day, might not be good for them either. Cold outside during the day, then into a warm house, and back out into the cold during the day. Too bad you couldn't rig up a small heater of some sort, even a 250 Watt reptile heater out in the loft, and slowly lower it to get them used to the cold. I'm not a good one to ask either, as I hate seeing animals out in the freezing cold also. My loft is insulated, and I use the reptile heaters over a couple of perches and shelves, and when it gets really cold out, I keep a heater on low. A reptile heater (250 watt) would put some heat in the loft while they get used to the outdoors. Anyway you could run a wire.

People will probably be in soon to say that we're nuts, and you can just put them outside and leave them there. We are probably babying our birds. But they are my pets, also I like to spend time in there with them, and can't do that if it's freezing.
 

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Bringing them in and out every day, might not be good for them either. Cold outside during the day, then into a warm house, and back out into the cold during the day. Too bad you couldn't rig up a small heater of some sort, even a 250 Watt reptile heater out in the loft, and slowly lower it to get them used to the cold. I'm not a good one to ask either, as I hate seeing animals out in the freezing cold also. My loft is insulated, and I use the reptile heaters over a couple of perches and shelves, and when it gets really cold out, I keep a heater on low. A reptile heater (250 watt) would put some heat in the loft while they get used to the outdoors. Anyway you could run a wire.

People will probably be in soon to say that we're nuts, and you can just put them outside and leave them there. We are probably babying our birds. But they are my pets, also I like to spend time in there with them, and can't do that if it's freezing.
I agree, I don't think bringing them in and out is good for them either. Too much of a temperature change. Their bodies are going to try to adapt to the sudden change causing undo stress. JMHO
I would just take your time finishing the loft and getting it to exactly what you want - inside and out, and have it all ready for spring.

And so what if they think people with heaters are nuts, at least the birds appreciate it - and that makes me happy :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The loft is insulated, and I can add a heat lamp or heater.... I was a bit worried about the possibilty of a fire.... I want it kinda warm (above freezing) so I can be out there with them.

What substrate do you use in the loft with the heating elements??

I was thinking about straw, a wood chip bedding (aspen), and/or pine needles. The possibility of a fire increases though.


Pigeon info:
Two of my pigeons (Beautifful and Whiteflight) have been indoors..Both were hand raised...Beautiful is 3yrs old and Whiteflight is 2....the Fantails just came from a loft and outdoor temps....about 2 weeks again. The homer was also use to outdoor...but has not been indoors somehwere (here or in Chicago) for about 2months.

The fantails and homer are all four a bit restlist at being inside. We have the back porch that is 10 degrees coller than indoor temps, and the poll barn style garage...that is about 15 degree cooler than that. It is currently warm than the loft...but the loft does not have any heat elements yet.

With the aded heating elements it will be warmer...but warm enough?? I guess i won't know till I put the heat lamps or heater out and get a thermometer.

Don't worry guys I also don't want them out there freeezing ;). These are my best friends. I just know that for four going outdoor would be awesome. For the other two it would be a bit scary...

-Hilly
 

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I wouldn't use a heating lamp. Those bulbs can shatter. Even if you use the red ones, they DO throw light on the area 24/7. Also they have been known to shatter and cause fires. You could burn your loft down if they shatter. You can buy reptile heaters, which hang in the same fixtures as the heat bulbs. Pet shops sell them. I've seen them 40 or 60 watts in pet stores. I bought mine online and got 250 watt heaters. They are safer, as they don't shatter. I hang one over a perching area, and another one over a shelf area where they can go if they want to be a bit warmer. My loft is 8X10, but if yours is smaller, the air would be a bit warmer in there from the heating element. You could get one and try it with a thermometer to see how warm the air gets. I would buy the safety cover that fits on it, and wire it on, so that they can't get near the bulb. Also, I have had birds try to land on the top, which gets really hot. I have since attached an aluminum pie plate on the top so that they cannot land on it as they would slide off. If you want the info on the website where I get mine, let me know. Just hang them a few feet from the perches. You can tell by holding up the light fixture and putting your hand on the perch.

 

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How big is your loft? I do use pine needles and straw, and pine shavings, But the heaters are up at the ceiling, and my loft is large enough where the heater wouldn't be near the bedding.

Waynette used one last year near a nest box and the birds loved it. She must have had bedding in the box. Waynette, did you have any problems with yours? Maybe you could explain to Hilly how you did it, or maybe share a picture. I remember your saying that all the other birds would crowd around it for the warm. They appreciate a bit of warmth here where it gets so cold during the winter months.


One of them, I just made a cover with hardware cloth to cover the part where the bulb is. The covers they sell don't seem to fit right, and I always have to wire them on anyway.
 

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did that fixture come with the cage on it?
No it didn't. You have to buy it and put it on, but it never seems to go on as it is supposed to, so I just wire it on. I actually just made another one with hardware cloth, and wired it on. They work great, and when I'm in there, if I am standing near it, I can feel the warmth from it. They're nice. They are sold at the smae web site as the heater.

Here is the link for the heater. Then you have to buy the fixture, which they also have, that will take a 250 watt bulb or heating element.

http://lllreptile.com/store/catalog...amic-bulbs/-/zoo-med-250-watt-ceramic-heater/
 

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I use radiant heating wall panels in the loft. They are economic on electricity 400 W each and extremely safe.
What are radiant heat wall panels? What do they look like, and where do you ge them? Never heard of them.
 

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What i did with a fantail, and a homer i got last winter was, i put them in the attic where its not too cold as the outside but still cold, for a month or so then moved them into the loft. They never got sick or anything. By the way they were kept indoors since they were born.
 

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How big is your loft? I do use pine needles and straw, and pine shavings, But the heaters are up at the ceiling, and my loft is large enough where the heater wouldn't be near the bedding.

Waynette used one last year near a nest box and the birds loved it. She must have had bedding in the box. Waynette, did you have any problems with yours? Maybe you could explain to Hilly how you did it, or maybe share a picture. I remember your saying that all the other birds would crowd around it for the warm. They appreciate a bit of warmth here where it gets so cold during the winter months.


One of them, I just made a cover with hardware cloth to cover the part where the bulb is. The covers they sell don't seem to fit right, and I always have to wire them on anyway.
I got 2 small one's and 1 large.
These (oops) babies were born in the dead of winter, so I hung a small one pointing into the nest box. The other birds would crowd around it, outside the nest box. They loved it.



Caution** the fixture (that the heating element screws into) HAS to be ceramic. NOT one of those cheap plastic one's - there not safe with a ceramic reptile heater.
I had the same problem with the covers, I made my own out of mesh.
 

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What i did with a fantail, and a homer i got last winter was, i put them in the attic where its not too cold as the outside but still cold, for a month or so then moved them into the loft. They never got sick or anything. By the way they were kept indoors since they were born.
That's a really good idea. Smart.
 

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Thanks Waynette. That's a great shot. It explains the whole thing pretty well. I did mention that the fixture had to be rated for 250 watts, but I think you made that clearer by mentioning that it had to be ceramic. That's important. I love these things. As a matter of fact, I ordered more a short while ago, just in case they should ever wear out of something. They're great! I learned about them from another PT member. I think it was Karen in Lowell. Great idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks you guys!

My loft is 8 X 8, but the ceiling is 6ft up (8x8x6).

I also have that type of heating element already due to reptiles. I was also thinking about a heater near the top of the loft, would also help... it is up off the bedding, near the tin. I also have some heat mats that could be put out there...they could lay on them when cold and move off when they get too warm.

We got the outside painted, and nesting boxes up on the inside. I just have to get some perches up and oil the vent fixtures....

I have to get a thermometer, but it was warm out there today. With the vents and windows closed no air gets through there...

-Hilly
 
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