A cool chicken is a happy chicken

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by StarlynMarie, Jun 27, 2016.

  1. StarlynMarie

    StarlynMarie Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 18, 2015
    Antioch, CA
    Already in the mid to high 90's up here in the Bay Area and my chickens (the chicks as well) are not having it. What are the best ways to keep them cool?

    I saw somewhere that making little mud patches is good for them, keeps their feet cool and I just did that (assuming it stays wet with how hot it is) just to see how it works. And, because I know it works well for my bunnies, I have frozen two litre bottles in with not only the bunnies but the chicks as well (they share a space with one of our rabbits).

    But I also read that cold watermelon can help them cool down. My only concern with that is: how much watermelon is too much? I can deal with watery or runny poo, but not if that's bad for them. If I give them a few pieces or a couple of slices a day would that be too much?

    Any advice on cooling them down is appreciated. This weekend I plan to get more tarp to help keep more sun off the chicks and one of the rabbits. Unfortunately, in the afternoon, they get hit by it and are only left a small patch in the back corner of their coop to keep out of it. While they are a few months old, I'm still not sure how well Orpingtons and Jersey Giants handle heat. The RIRs and Australorps are doing alright, but the last thing I want to do is come home and having lost any of them because of the heat. *knock on wood*

    Please and thank you
    ~Signed, a very concerned chicken parent~
     
  2. Poultry parent

    Poultry parent Chillin' With My Peeps

    give them however much watermelon you want, mine eat what they want and then leave it alone. provide plenty of shade! you can freeze berries in a block of ice and they will eat that.
    make sure their coop has very good ventilation!
     
  3. BruceAZ

    BruceAZ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 18, 2016
    Valley of the Sun :)
    cooling them is one thing

    but giving them proper feed each day is also important

    there's little nutrition value in watermelons..your chickens will lose weight and eggs related problems might occur

    so just give watermelons like you would give treats

    provide plenty of shade and water with ice and wet ground to lie on would be sufficient for them
     
  4. Jensownzoo

    Jensownzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 7, 2016
    Saint Louis, MO
    Honestly, if you squish watermelon in your fist, the actual amount of plant matter is minimal so it replaces more water than feed. I wouldn't worry too much about overfeeding it.

    I do shallow containers of water to stand in, I put blocks of ice in with their fermented feed and in their waterers, have box fans going, and was thinking about getting a mister to share with the goats. They get high-water snacks in the afternoon such as melons, cucumbers, zucchini, tomatoes--frozen preferably. I keep meaning to freeze shredded veggies in blocks of ice, but I forget.
     
  5. zinkie

    zinkie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 14, 2013
    Southern NH
    On thing I did one hot summer was to take a flying saucer (round snow sled) and place a frozen water jug in the middle (poke a few holes into it) Also add some water into the bottom. The jug melts slowly and keeps the water cold for quite a while. They can drink or stand in it. They loved it.
     

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