Hi guys, my coop and run are almost completely in constant shade. they probably only get 3 or 4 hours of direct sun a day and i was just wondering if this could effect thier laying. Are they ok with this amount of light or do i need to get the Stihl out and start cutting down some trees lol?
How Much sunlight do my Chickens need?
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Direct sunlight is necessary for the proper formation of Vitamin D -- which is synthesized in the natural oils on a bird's feathers and ingested during preening. I have a cockatiel who suffered from being kept in too dark a room for several months when we lived in a place with no good windows. He must have been more sensitive because his cagemate was fine.
This doesn't mean broiling them in a place barren of shade. Just free access to sunnier and shadier parts of the run.
Our coop is under a canopy of huge, old maples. Even the run is shaded, but I have to guess that in the times of the year when there are no leaves on those trees, the chickies will get plenty of sun light, if not combined with some cold.
Humans don't require much more than 10-15 mins of direct sunlight a day for vit D production. I'll be surprised if chickies need much more than (let alone equal to) that amount.
This morning when I went in the coop, they were all standing on the ground in the sunlight that was filtering in through the window. I'm guessing they'll do what they need to get what they need.
It was a good question to ask though.