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Arctic cold front in West Central Arkansas

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Guwisti, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. Guwisti

    Guwisti Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 27, 2009
    Van Buren, AR
    Anyone else in Arkansas worried. We're expecting tonight and tomorrow, wind chills down to MINUS 20, northerly winds gusting around 30 mph, and tomorrows high is 19. They've handled the weather temps so far alright, though I did see 4 hens in one regular sized nesting box one evening. They're still getting around during the day and no signs of frostbite. But this drop tonight is going to be the lowest temps we've experienced by far. If there was snow that would help insulate their henhouse, but it's going to be sleeting rain and ice and a hard cold wind....they're in an insulated fancy dog house, but still worry, still cracks and crevices for wind to get in. So far I've been keeping their coop door open at night, should I shut it tonight....let them sleep in the bathroom...I'm so worried about my girls! I have no way to hook up heat for them, no electricity outside. Any advice is appreciated. This is my first winter with chickens
     
  2. chickenlittle32

    chickenlittle32 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 19, 2009
    Rayne Louisiana
    I am not in Ark but, we as well are getting crazy weather ...I'd advise to close the door...and if there are any drafts...cover them...especially since your chickens are not used to that type of weather...maybe even put some very hot water in some jugs and put it inside the coop...we have a similar thread for Louisianians if you'd like to read bc it is similar...just be aware some of the northerners don't think we should panic....LOL Good luck and stay warm!!!
     
  3. scarter

    scarter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 22, 2008
    Roberts, WI
    Some people have posted on a recent threat similar to yours but TX. Good Luck
     
  4. Chicky Tocks

    Chicky Tocks [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2666.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Ru

    Oct 20, 2008
    Benton, Arkansas
    I'm here in Benton. My cuckoo maran rooster has a bit of frostbite on his comb from just this past week of cold! I would definately close the door, and put extra hay inside if you can't run a lightbulb. Hay will help to retain the heat.

    And [​IMG]
     
  5. Guwisti

    Guwisti Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 27, 2009
    Van Buren, AR
    How can we not panic! lol. [​IMG] They're like feathery little daughters to me. I'll shut the door tonight. I have a tarp up over part of their run and coop to block air drafts. We got a blizzard in this area over Christmas, well we got 6 inches here the blizzard was really in Oklahoma, but Christmas morning I just knew my girls were dead. I couldn't see them outside. My fiancee and I put on our shoes and bundled up, heads down, expecting the worse. I opened up the squeaky back door and hear one of my Heathers squawk loud and I tell you it was the sweetest sound I'd ever heard! [​IMG]

    I'm afraid if I let them inside they'll get used to the warm and I'll do more harm than good. So ok....shutting henhouse door...trying to think of other things to do. I'll go read the Louisiana post. I just can't get over minus 20. skeeeryy!
     
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Any access to square bales of hay? You can stack them up around the outside of their coop/dog house to break the wind and help insulate.
    My chickens are still out in it right now. They'll be having a cold night in the coop tonight. I just gave them a hot supper.
     
  7. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    I'm not terribly worried about mine. I expect they may not be Hilton-hotel-comfortable tonight, but they'll manage. I put a tarp on the north side of the coop to keep out these blustery winds, and they have a 75watt red bulb over their roost (just added it today!) I also use heated dog water bowls to keep their water thawed.

    They really don't seem to mind the cold, but this wind has got me more worried than the tems do!!
    My babies are at that mini-molt age and they just don't have as much down as the adults do. There's 8 of them in a doghouse coop just big enough for 4-5 adults, so at least they have lots of body heat in addition to their lamp.
     
  8. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    Remember, if the chickens are in a coop--wind chill is NOT a factor. The still air temp. is the only relevant number. It is good to keep a draft off of them on the roost, but be sure and keep some ventilation. We just had a big discussion about frostbite, and it seems that one of the biggest factors is temps near freezing, but with a lot of trapped water vapor (from poo and chicken breath). With a dry, well-ventilated coop, they will handle near zero just fine.
     
  9. cimarron

    cimarron Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 25, 2008
    Central Tejas
    howdy i'm the poster from texas...worried about the cold too, since we don't see weather like this often. the air temp will be around 15--20 down here in central texas but those 40 MPH winds are going to be something else. some folks recommend vaseline on the combs and feet to protect from frostbite...sounds like it's going to be cold as hell in arkansas. if you can are really worried i don't see what the harm would be to bring them inside. except the mess. do you have a garage?

    stay warm!!
     
  10. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    There is a danger to bringing them inside--the changes in temperature can be very hard on their system. If you bring them into a 60 or 70 degree area it is going to be like us going into 90 degrees suddenly. Then they will reacclimate to warmer temps, and putting them back outside is way worse on them...So if you feel the need to bring them in, put them in an area, like a garage or porch, that is as close to the outside temperatures as possible. Remember, they don't have clothes they can take on and off-right now they have their winter coats on!
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2010

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