Cold is coming/here

Jamandack

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 20, 2012
24
0
34
Howdy from Utah. It's going to get chilly quickly and I'm aware I need to put a warmer in the water (suggestions on brands would be great!!) so it doesn't freeze, however, am I right to assume that I don't need a heat lamp in my coop if all my birds are all climate ones? Feel free to correct me if you notice any of the breeds listed in my signature are not cold weather friendly. We've got great ventilation, and it's a cozy small coop. I also have an old window to put on the outside of the south side of the run to let in light but not snow so it shouldn't get too slushy/icy there. My other concern is that they all just started molting about 3 weeks ago- any concern there???

Will they get around to laying again if I don't add a light at all? I'm semi okay with them taking a laying break in the winter but would rather they lay a little bit.

Funny side note: the only reason I'm questioning this is because my 80+ yr old neighbor keeps cornering my husband to tell him our chickens are going to freeze and that we need to be sprinkling cayenne pepper in their scratch to keep them laying through the winter. lol...please tell me they'll be fine if I'm right- but I'm totally open to suggestions if I'm wrong!
 

AlienChick

Crowing
Apr 9, 2010
2,917
130
251
Glasgow, KY
Howdy from Utah. It's going to get chilly quickly and I'm aware I need to put a warmer in the water (suggestions on brands would be great!!) so it doesn't freeze,
Sorry, I don't have any info on water warmers, but there are a lot of them available at the feed stores and online. Myself, I still have to change the water during the day since I don't have electricity running to most of my pens.
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however, am I right to assume that I don't need a heat lamp in my coop if all my birds are all climate ones? Feel free to correct me if you notice any of the breeds listed in my signature are not cold weather friendly. We've got great ventilation, and it's a cozy small coop. I also have an old window to put on the outside of the south side of the run to let in light but not snow so it shouldn't get too slushy/icy there. My other concern is that they all just started molting about 3 weeks ago- any concern there???
Birds naturally molt at this time of year; if that was ever an issue, I suppose Mother Nature would have had them molt only in the summer. You're right to assume you do not need extra heat in the coop. It's actually a hindrance for the chickens to add heat because it does not allow them to naturally grow enough down feathers to survive in the freezing temps. Keep an eye on the condensation inside your coop. If you notice too much humidity, try creating more ventilation. You don't want them getting frostbite from the condensation on their combs or wattles. Also, if you have a bird with extra large wattles or comb, try rubbing some vaseline on it during extreme (sub-Z) cold days.

Will they get around to laying again if I don't add a light at all? I'm semi okay with them taking a laying break in the winter but would rather they lay a little bit.
They will still lay during the shorter winter days; they just may not lay EVERY day. You'll still get eggs. Allowing them to take a much-needed break just keeps them healthier and extends their life. But if you're only keeping your layers for a couple of years and replacing them, then you may not be concerned with extending their life.

Funny side note: the only reason I'm questioning this is because my 80+ yr old neighbor keeps cornering my husband to tell him our chickens are going to freeze and that we need to be sprinkling cayenne pepper in their scratch to keep them laying through the winter. lol...please tell me they'll be fine if I'm right- but I'm totally open to suggestions if I'm wrong!

OUCH!
 

cluck5

Chirping
7 Years
Aug 21, 2012
133
4
89
Headingley, Manitoba, CANADA
Hello. I live in Manitoba Canada and it gets really cold here. I am new to chickens so by no means an expert. We did insulate our coop with 2" styrofoam. I also run a red heat (brooder) lamp in the coop which is also on a "thermocube" so it is not on continuously. Apparently chickens need 14-16 hours of day light to lay through the winter months, so we have installed a 60 watt bulb in the coop that is on a timer. I think the molting last for some time so they are unable to lay eggs while they are molting, the molt is connected to the amount of daylight hours (I think, not 100% sure, but if they get 14-16 hours of light, they wont molt). My pullets haven't started molting and I did get my first egg today. Also, we just made one of those cookie tin heaters the instructions of which, you will find in the forum somewhere. So far, it works really well, but we will have to see how it does in -35 weather!! Good luck, let us know how things work out for you.
 

Rooster Rules

Songster
7 Years
Hello. I live in Manitoba Canada and it gets really cold here. I am new to chickens so by no means an expert. We did insulate our coop with 2" styrofoam. I also run a red heat (brooder) lamp in the coop which is also on a "thermocube" so it is not on continuously. Apparently chickens need 14-16 hours of day light to lay through the winter months, so we have installed a 60 watt bulb in the coop that is on a timer. I think the molting last for some time so they are unable to lay eggs while they are molting, the molt is connected to the amount of daylight hours (I think, not 100% sure, but if they get 14-16 hours of light, they wont molt). My pullets haven't started molting and I did get my first egg today. Also, we just made one of those cookie tin heaters the instructions of which, you will find in the forum somewhere. So far, it works really well, but we will have to see how it does in -35 weather!! Good luck, let us know how things work out for you.
I'm in the Interlake district of Manitoba, so may be a little familiar with the cold.
What size is the coop? How many birds?
I think the best approach for our area is to keep the coop and water in coop from freezing, but not warm. Seems to be the birds need to be somewhat acclimatized, so they grow a nice set of winter feathers, they really can handle colder temps than us. We are super lucky here in Manitoba, as power outages are not often or very long. Hydro is cheep cheep here too, as compared to many other regions of North America.
My folks never heated any building for there hens, no lights either, but that was many years ago. As we both know, people have been raising chickens in Manitoba for over a 100 years with our wicked cold winters, and sometime wicked hot summers.
Sounds to me you have a good set-up, and your chooks will be doing well......RR another Manitoban
 

karlamaria

Songster
8 Years
Jan 30, 2011
2,339
65
246
Western montana
we made this in less then 10 minutes, got the tin container at the thrift store for 1.00 !! this was less then 5.00 to make and worked so well last winter we are doing it again. i can not tell you how well the water stays unfrozen, and im not rushing out to bring water every morning. I make sure at bed time there water is clean and litter free, and sleep in the next morning. ! ( we also got an electric door opener lol. )
here is the web site to make your self one.
http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2011/11/make-cookie-tin-waterer-heater-under-10.html






 
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Rhoise

Songster
8 Years
Apr 26, 2012
687
56
186
Boise, Idaho
I just bought a 1.5 gallon heated, thermostat controlled, pet bowl for 12.99, and a $2.49 plastic paint bucket with a handle as an insert (could have used ice cream bucket recycle but didn't want to eat it all lol, and paint bucket fit perfectly!)

I liked this idea because I can bring it in the house and scrub it once a week. I plan on carrying a gallon jug of h20 out to the coop when I feed and collect eggs. I like to add ACV to my chooks H2O so wanted to stay plastic(and didn't want to buy another 2 gallon metal fount).

 

Fred's Hens

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
I just bought a 1.5 gallon heated, thermostat controlled, pet bowl for 12.99, and a $2.49 plastic paint bucket with a handle as an insert (could have used ice cream bucket recycle but didn't want to eat it all lol, and paint bucket fit perfectly!)

I liked this idea because I can bring it in the house and scrub it once a week. I plan on carrying a gallon jug of h20 out to the coop when I feed and collect eggs. I like to add ACV to my chooks H2O so wanted to stay plastic(and didn't want to buy another 2 gallon metal fount).


Yup, that's my system. Just carry out a gallon milk jug of water. Top it off. Done.

Priceless in zero weather. Have 3 of those little pails, and you can swap them out. Do the cleaning indoors. Easy.
 

Rhoise

Songster
8 Years
Apr 26, 2012
687
56
186
Boise, Idaho
Yup, that's my system. Just carry out a gallon milk jug of water. Top it off. Done.

Priceless in zero weather. Have 3 of those little pails, and you can swap them out. Do the cleaning indoors. Easy.
Thanks Fred, I got this idea from one of your posts, and already had a heated bowl, couldn't pass this new one up for a back up at $12.99!! I also thought the ice cream would cost me $5 and i'd gain 5# that i don't need lol, so went with a couple paint buckets, again great idea to have a spare thanks for the idea.....I like to check on the chooks a few times a day anyway, and carrying a gallon jug and a blue insert across the wet slippery yard in the dark sounds a heck of alot better than lugging a three gallon full water fount that barley fits in my kitchen sink. I'll save that for next summer when the hose is handy
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cluck5

Chirping
7 Years
Aug 21, 2012
133
4
89
Headingley, Manitoba, CANADA
Yes, I think that's a great idea, I know my 5 gallon metal font will be a pain in the ### to fill, I just thought the chickens would poop and make a mess in the pail, maybe my chickens are messier than yours! I can certainly see the merit of your set up, easy to clean, easy to fill.
 

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