Chooks die in heat when there’s no breeze

A friend, Judy, passed on this important detail about the impact of heat on chooks:

“I just picked up my meat from Feather and Bone, a Marrickville butchery who buy their meat from local farmers, provenance immaculate :) and I asked about chickens. Sadly they have none as 320 died last Tuesday on the property of their Bellingen supplier, despite shade trees and water. Their deaths were caused by lack of breeze…… apparently chooks  have difficulty regulating body heat. The producer is going to set up some kind of fan and spray/moisture system for future days like that – sounds tricky given the flock will have to be rounded up and housed to benefit. Great that they have this plan in progress!”

Judy suggests my two chooks, Cleo and Pesky, may have to share the fan  and perhaps come inside the house with me, and I agree.
What I do is hose the tree above the chooks, where the native stingless bee hive is also located – bees may also die in extreme heat, and the falling misty water evaporates thereby causing a tangible drop in temperature.  Last Tuesday – the amazingly hot day – we hosed that tree five times – even during the evening as the heat persisted late into the night.  But the house is generally five to ten degrees cooler inside even on days like last Tuesday so bringing them inside or putting a fan out there in their run to blow the cool air are two other options,
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  • Michael Mobbs

    Michael is a former Environmental Lawyer who is uniquely placed to consult in four main areas:

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