So here's the idea. We live in Southwestern Michigan, close to Indiana border (15 mins or so). We have a lot next to DH's dad's house nearby (about 7 miles from where we live) DH's dad is probably not up to doing much in regards to helping with the chickens, but my mother, who lives in the same town, says she can help check on them etc. If we put up a coop, is there a way to set it up to not need letting out in the morning and closed up at night? Maybe do a big run instead???? Father-in-law has like 4 dogs that are loose and should help keep predators away, no guarantee though. My mom thinks none of this will work because coops need to have heat lamps in the winter. Is this true? Can I just insulate it very well??? I cannot run electric to the coop. I will of course check others posts about winter-hardy breeds etc. I will probably be getting mostly quick growing birds for the pot anyways... want to try a RAW diet for my dog, and with a family of 6 it's always nice to have a few birds to throw on the grill as well. Are there any breeds that are better about sticking close to their coops and not wandering off too far? I have read that cornish x's don;t even forage really. Will they work better with a smaller run? And my final question. If I decide to raise some for meat and some for eggs or just to have, should they have seperate coops??? Will meat birds, the gorgers that they sound like, eat the eggs of the other chickens?