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How to keep the eggs from freezing?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I live in northern Vermont and this is my first winter with chickens and I need to know how I can prevent the eggs from freezing.  I leave for work at 6:30 am and don't get home until 4:30/5:00 pm.  My coop is not insulated and the nest boxes jut out from the main roosting area.  I'd appreciate any and all advice.  Thanks!

post #2 of 12

Good question.  For the time being I am at home, but wonder how often I should check for eggs to avoid freezing. Maybe a good guage would be if the water inside the coop isn't frozen, the eggs shouldn't be either?  Extra bedding in the nest boxes may help.  Anyone have an answer for us?

1 well-loved husband,  2 cats that have adopted our back porch as their own, 16 hens: 2 BR, 1 EE, 2 Ancona, 2 Columbian Wyandottes, 2 Speckled Sussex, 2 BA, 1 Cuckoo Marans, 2 Dominiques, 2 Welsummers.  17 new chicks hatched 5/30/11 (barnyard mix of olive and dark egg layers, the roos are signed up for freezer camp at the end of the season).
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1 well-loved husband,  2 cats that have adopted our back porch as their own, 16 hens: 2 BR, 1 EE, 2 Ancona, 2 Columbian Wyandottes, 2 Speckled Sussex, 2 BA, 1 Cuckoo Marans, 2 Dominiques, 2 Welsummers.  17 new chicks hatched 5/30/11 (barnyard mix of olive and dark egg layers, the roos are signed up for freezer camp at the end of the season).
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post #3 of 12

Heat lamps over the nesting boxes?
Close off the nesting area with tarps and keep a low wat bulb in that area?
An elec heater turn to low setting hung from the roof?

These are just Ideas Good luck yall

Youre just jealous because my chickens only talk to me.....:-P
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Youre just jealous because my chickens only talk to me.....:-P
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post #4 of 12

Put a lot of straw in the nesting boxes (or hay but shavings seem to pack down and not insulate) then  hope one of the birds stays on the eggs to keep them warm.  Even so, you will probably have some freeze.  I habitually collect twice a day in the cold weather and still lose a few.  You can scramble or use a frozen egg for baking but, IMO, the quality deteriorates too much for frying.

I live on 7.5 acres in the western Catskill foothills where I have a 3200 sq.ft veggie garden, 100-plant blueberry patch as well as strawberry and raspberry patches, 4 cats and over 4 dozen chickens: Black Stars, RIR's,  EE's, Brown leghorns, BR's, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australops (including one very happy EE rooster) plus 16 guinea fowl. I've been keeping chickens since I was in high school...



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I live on 7.5 acres in the western Catskill foothills where I have a 3200 sq.ft veggie garden, 100-plant blueberry patch as well as strawberry and raspberry patches, 4 cats and over 4 dozen chickens: Black Stars, RIR's,  EE's, Brown leghorns, BR's, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australops (including one very happy EE rooster) plus 16 guinea fowl. I've been keeping chickens since I was in high school...



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post #5 of 12

This is what I'm going to try... I use a light on a timer inside the coop for a few hours in the morning and evening.  They usually finish laying around noon.  So, I'm thinking of letting them wake up at sunrise without the light, which will be later in the winter and then increasing the lighting in the evening hours until, say 10 PM.  My thinking is that this may get them to start laying a little later in the morning and then if I get home around 5, they won't be in the nest box as long.  If it really is a problem, I think a regular 60 watt light bulb near the nest box should throw off some heat also.  I prefer to stay away from using a heat lamp.  I don't want to burn down the coop.


Lisa

post #6 of 12

Just my 2 cents:  I collect a couple times a day all year long.  In the winter, sure some eggs freeze, but I have never had a problem with a frozen egg, just don't use it right away.  I let them thaw a little in the fridge for a day or so before using them.  They've never looked or tasted any different to me.
ETA: as far as I'm concerned a heat lamp in the coop in a big no no. heat lamp=fire


Edited by SmartyChick - 11/9/10 at 10:03am
I'm a saint yet I'm a sinner
I'm a looser and a winner
I am steady and unstable
I am young, but I am able
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I'm a saint yet I'm a sinner
I'm a looser and a winner
I am steady and unstable
I am young, but I am able
Reply
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Backyard_Chicken_rancher 

Heat lamps over the nesting boxes?
Close off the nesting area with tarps and keep a low wat bulb in that area?
An elec heater turn to low setting hung from the roof?

These are just Ideas Good luck yall


You might want to reread this  thread http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=411434&p=1  about how someone almost burned down their coop using a light bulb.


Edited by woodmort - 11/9/10 at 10:05am

I live on 7.5 acres in the western Catskill foothills where I have a 3200 sq.ft veggie garden, 100-plant blueberry patch as well as strawberry and raspberry patches, 4 cats and over 4 dozen chickens: Black Stars, RIR's,  EE's, Brown leghorns, BR's, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australops (including one very happy EE rooster) plus 16 guinea fowl. I've been keeping chickens since I was in high school...



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I live on 7.5 acres in the western Catskill foothills where I have a 3200 sq.ft veggie garden, 100-plant blueberry patch as well as strawberry and raspberry patches, 4 cats and over 4 dozen chickens: Black Stars, RIR's,  EE's, Brown leghorns, BR's, Buff Orpingtons, Black Australops (including one very happy EE rooster) plus 16 guinea fowl. I've been keeping chickens since I was in high school...



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post #8 of 12

I have a small coop with 3 1/2 inches of insulation. My coop stays about 40 degrees in the winter, sometimes it has reached 50 degrees. I don't put in a heat lamp and I only have had four hens in the 4x8 coop. There body heat just stayed trapped inside and kept it above freezing. I wasn't cheep to build, but it is quite nice. No frozen eggs or water

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. - John 3:16
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For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. - John 3:16
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post #9 of 12

hello vermonter. Have not run across many on here. From Vermont myself now living in Monkton. But anyways I have had chickens for 3 years now and only one frozen egg. That egg had fallen or was layed on the floor. They will keep them warm for you. Jim s

post #10 of 12

I have an ole green house that we converted in to a coop, but alot of  drafts and cracks, this is the first time I got a frozen egg, its 15 here today and I cant keep up with the demand so I dont want frozen eggs, I have a water that has a heater in it, so the water stays good but I also have 2 ducks and the duck egg is what froze to where it cracked the shell, I won't sell cracked eggs.  Any other suggestions.

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