Can young hens withstand the cold winter?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by GoldDogsMom, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. GoldDogsMom

    GoldDogsMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am thinking of ordering some new chicks but I am concerned with their age when winter hits. I am in Western PA so it doesn't get really cold til November/December. Do you think I still have enough time to raise chicks, move them out and have them ready for winter?
     
  2. Gmsg01

    Gmsg01 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Upstate NY, a friend gives them a warm light all winter in case of frost bite, adults too
     
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I got a box of 25 chicks last September 10th from Meyers. They were brooded outside, in the barn, and did super. When January turned bitter cold (-25) they were 16 week old and beginning to lay. I actually think their youthful metabolism was a plus. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Winter, even bitter cold winter, is simply not as hard on chickens, with the big down and feather coats, as this past summer's heat waves were. Keys? Dry environment, protection from drafts, good ventilation to prevent condensation, which is the cause of frostbite. Finally, cold hardy breeds.

    BTW, my barn is not heated.
     
  4. zookeeper15133

    zookeeper15133 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There is a swap this coming Sunday at Fayette County Fairgrounds. Also next Sunday. It starts at 7. You should be able to get some there. What are you looking for?

    Brood them outside, they feather in faster.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  5. GoldDogsMom

    GoldDogsMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That would be about 1 1/2 hrs from me...I currently have 4 hens from tractor supply, 3 white, 1 brown and only getting 1 egg/day. The weasel killed the other 2 so I am thinking of starting over with a variety. I have had mine for 2 yrs now and have learned ALOT about hens...
     
  6. zookeeper15133

    zookeeper15133 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you make the trip, you should be able to get adult birds for less than you would pay for chicks and shipping. Hens go for $5 to $8 each. There should be an extra large turn out because there wasn't one last month because of the fair.

    Where are you? I am near Elizabeth.
     
  7. GoldDogsMom

    GoldDogsMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am in Indiana, PA If I were to get adults, 2 questions, will they honestly tell me how old they are? and how do you socialize adults to live together?
     
  8. zookeeper15133

    zookeeper15133 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Trust you instincts on the seller. There are very honest, helpful sellers and then there are those who tell you what they think you want to hear. If you don't feel good about the seller, move on to the next one. There will be plenty! I was selling a couple months ago and I didn't feel right about a buyer so I didn't sell to him.

    First, Quarantine! You have 4 hens, how many more are you planning on getting? Are they of comparable size?

    Basically Let them in separate runs where they can see each other for a few days. Then let them in the run together. There will be some squabbling til they get the order sorted out. When you're ready, put the new hens on the roost in the old coop at night, while they are sleeping.

    Get there EARLY. It opens at 7. A lot are gone by 9:30. Some are sold out by 7:30!
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  9. GoldDogsMom

    GoldDogsMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When I make a decision as to when to get new chickens, I am planning to give the older chickens to an Amish family...not sure I am ready yet.
     
  10. zookeeper15133

    zookeeper15133 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Maybe you could trade your 4 plus a few dollars for some young hens from them.

    Good luck!
     

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