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buff orpingtons and cold weather question

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by davimi, Jan 2, 2010.

  1. davimi

    davimi In the Brooder

    May 30, 2009
    I have 5 buff orpington chickens. They are supposed to be weather hardy chickens, but I am worried with these cold temperatures. At what temperature is it necessary to provide added heat?

  2. PAJerry

    PAJerry Songster

    Mar 22, 2008
    Waterford, PA
    I would suggest never, provided you have a decent coop with correct ventilation. The feathering on the orps is very fluffy and provides good body insulation.
  3. I agree. I have a BO hen and she is a big fluff ball. I also have 3 hens that are mostly Barred Rock and a little Silver laced Wyandotte they are also well feathered. The feathers on my New Hampshires dont seem so thick but if these was bred up in New Hamshire surely they can handle Oklahoma I would think. It is shaping up to be our coldest winter here since the late 80s. If I had White egg laying chickens with white faces I would be more concerned. These mediteranian bred chickens are not as cold hardy.
  4. cristy17

    cristy17 Songster

    As long as the Buffs have protection from the wind and a good coop, they'll be fine. They were bred for cold weather hardiness. Mine are out if the temp. is at least 15 degrees.
  5. Kismet

    Kismet Songster

    Jul 3, 2008
    New Hampshire, USA
    They grow their own down coats! It is we who are cold - sometimes, I wish I could grow feathers to keep warm, too. [​IMG]
  6. Pitchfork

    Pitchfork Chirping

    Apr 11, 2008
    I added a heat lamp to my small coop after the GREAT BLIZZARD of Christmas Eve, that occured here in the Tulsa area. When the chickens came out Christmas morning they had a lot of frost bite on their combs. The poor Rooster's wattles were nearly completely black. Since I added the heat lamp there has been no further damage. Other than their combs they seemed no worse for wear. However, with the heat lamp they seem reluctant to come out in the mornings. I was out at 6 this morning to open the pop door and they just peeked out, looked at the new fallen snow, and went back to sleep in the coop.
  7. 1stepcloser

    1stepcloser Poultry In Motion

    Sep 16, 2009
    Dover, TN
    Quote:[​IMG] Who said chickens aren't smart?!

  8. Golden the Bantam

    Golden the Bantam In the Brooder

    Jan 2, 2010
    fill the coop with hay grass for insulation

  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Your question is actually a bit complicated in that the answer depends on a few different things. Part of it is how cold does it actually get, how well is the coop ventilated (more is usually better), what is the humidity in the coop, are they in a draft, how many of them do you have so they can huddle to keep warm, how big is the coop, is your coop insulated.... I suggest you check out these two links Pat has provided to help you determine your actual situation. Pat is the resident expert on cold weather on this site.

    Pat’s Winter Coop Temperatures

    Pat’s Ventilation

    I have 10 birds (You can see the breeds in my signature. Three are BO's) in a well-ventilated non-insulated, draft-free coop and I have had no problems other than water freezing with temperatures in the single digits Fahrenheit. Mine will not venture out in the snow, but they do roam outside, take dust baths, and just hang out in the low teens as long as they can get out of the wind.

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