Build Yer Own Chicken Igloo
Based on some advice we got here on the BYC forums, we had a catlitter pan that we put a bottle of frozen
water in, and found that the chickens would get in there to cool down. But my husband wanted to do MORE.
So, he made an igloo. And you can, too!
Yesterday was 107 degrees here, and it breaks my heart to see the stories people are posting about their
birds dying in this heat. This is a helpful solution for a few birds, but not a large flock. But, maybe it can
inspire you to build something that can help your birds keep cool.
Here is what he built, a straight-on view. You can probably guess the materials he used, I won't try to name
this stuff, but you can find something similar at your local hardware/DIY store. That is an old ice bucket at
the back that hubby decided not to use in the end, as you'll see later. The idea of a pan with sides works
because the cooler air wants to stay low...with the sids of the pan trapping the cool air, the chickens can hang
out where it is cooler:
My husband had thought he'd put the jug of ice water in the ice bucket, but he decided to do something different
when he noticed that after dumping some ice directly on their sand last night, the ice melted and the sand got wet
and the girls ran over and dug a hole and sat there cooling down.
Since they don't like to stand in water or touch the ice jug itself, hubby decided not to use the ice bucket, but to
just bury the frozen jug 1/2 down in the sand he added inside the igloo. (Note: He also put ice cubes, still in their
trays, at the bottom - under the sand. As it melted, the sand above it got damp and cool, which they like!)
Here it is inside their pen this morning.
Here is a gratitious shot of my son saying his morning hellos to the girls before school. He's just the right height
for us to send him in to retrieve the jugs, too, without taking off the cover to the run.
Message from hubby when he got home...
The Texas August Chilly Chicken Igloo Dome of Joy:
We came home and could see that the girls had spent time in the igloo. We let them out in the yard
to roam around, and when I went back about 4 minutes later they were all back inside the igloo just chillin.
The ice bottle was still cold and they were sipping condensation from the outer surface of it, and the sand
was still very moist and cool from the ice trays underneath.
So - success!
Here is the pic hubby took when he got home. Temp at 6:30 pm = 104. Chicks are chillaxin: