another question i probably should know

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by hogdogs87, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. hogdogs87

    hogdogs87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Do the chickens not sleep in the nesting boxes? I built them nesting boxes with hay in them. They have a perch/roost that runs along the front of the boxes. I was hoping they would get inside to sleep but they dont. There always side by side on the roost. Its cold outside to.
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    That's where you want them. It's also more like their natural sleeping quarters, which woulld usually be on a tree branch. People work hard sometimes to stop them from sleeping in the nesting boxes, because if they do, they also poop in them, resulting in poopy eggs. A chicken puts out more than half its daily poop at night.
     
  3. hogdogs87

    hogdogs87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Makes since. And thanks for the reply. Im am new to chickens and was just wandering. And about the poop...yeah there was a giant pile about the size of a baseball between 2 of the boxes this morning. :-(
     
  4. WNCcluck

    WNCcluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You definitely want them sleeping on the roosts. When it's cold, they fluff themselves up and snuggle together. Trust me when I say that it would be quite unusual for northern Georgia to get too cold for healthy chickens. They'll be fine without heat lamps or any other auxiliary heat source so long as they're not wet (as a rule damp is more dangerous to chickens than cold).

    Chickens eat all day then sleep (and poop) all night. You'll want them to use the nesting boxes just for laying eggs. Think about it this way- if they sleep in the nesting boxes, they poop in the nesting boxes. That makes for a less than stellar place for laying eggs.

    That said, don't worry if one of your birds occasionally sleeps in one of the nesting boxes.
     
  5. hogdogs87

    hogdogs87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank yall for the replies. I just wasn't sure. Now i am..lol. it is pretty cold right now though. Down in the teens at nigh. I cant stand it !!
     
  6. PrairieChickens

    PrairieChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Let me help put your mind at ease. My chickens handled temperatures of -15 F one winter in a rickety old coop with no heat source or insulation with absolutely no problems. Once they feather out, most chicken breeds are very adaptable to cold--it's heat you'll have to watch out for. Be ready to cool your chickens down when the temperatures climb above 90.
     
  7. hogdogs87

    hogdogs87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 4, 2015
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    Alrighty then..how would you recommend keeping them cool round about July when the temp is 100 or more..lol..thanks
     
  8. PrairieChickens

    PrairieChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There's lots of things people do to keep their chickens cool. This was my solution. I built a hut out of cinder blocks (note the open breezeway on the right for chickens who don't like being closed up.) I then run a hose on a low mist over the structure. A sheet of plastic under the wooden pallet keep water out of the inside of the hut. The water soaks into the bricks and evaporates, cooling the inside of the hut and breezeway. The only problem was we couldn't use it every day due to concerns about disease if we let the soil stay damp constantly, so we alternated between this on the hottest days and a regular misting hose in a different section of the run when the weather wasn't as brutal.
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