Cold weather is here...Do you let them outside in frigid temps?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by tinkarooni, Oct 29, 2008.

  1. tinkarooni

    tinkarooni Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 29, 2008
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    Or do you keep them confined inside the coop? I have a coop with a heater on a thermostat on at 35 degrees off at 45 degrees. Do you let them run around outside in the blustery wind or keep them inside on those cold days? Please let me know asap as they are cooped up right now I'm not certain what to do. Thanks!

    Edited to add: It's about 35 degrees here but boy is it nasty and windy.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2008
  2. JohnL11935

    JohnL11935 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Same weather here.

    I opened the pop door at 0500 this AM, just like every other AM.

    No heater.
     
  3. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

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    [​IMG]
    Please do a search for the word "cold" or "winter" or "freezing" in the topic line of the threads... there are several threads going on right now on "how cold is too cold". It has been dipping below 0F here for the last three days and the birds are fine. Give them a dry and draft house and they will be fine.
    [​IMG]
     
  4. tinkarooni

    tinkarooni Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:I am worried about the heater making it too warm and I am working on that....my husband is so smart, he put one of those thermometers in the coop that I can read from inside and its running about 47 degrees in there when it's 35 outside. I really only wanted to keep the water and eggs from freezing, I don't want to heat the all of outdoors. My coop is insulated so maybe I only need to turn the heater on for the coldest of the cold days?
     
  5. Momma_Cluck

    Momma_Cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    if there is a chicken door on the coop-- keep it open during the day, they are smart enough to know when to go in if it is too cold!

    If not-- time to make one!!!!! [​IMG]
     
  6. chickenbike

    chickenbike Chillin' With My Peeps

    A few things to consider regarding cold and wind:

    Do you birds free range or are they in a run?
    If they are in a run, you can put up clear plastic around 2-3 sides as wind protection.

    What breed are your birds? Certain birds are more cold tolerant than others.

    I would keep them comfortable, but not too warm in the coop. If it's too comfy,cozy in the coop, then the difference with the outside temperature could be too much. They won't fluff up their feathers etc.

    Keep an eye on their behaviour. If you see them bunching together lots....they may be too cold.


    I'm sure you will have other helpful replies. This site is a great place to get information. Also, check out Pat's page on winter ventilation:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-VENTILATION
     
  7. tinkarooni

    tinkarooni Out Of The Brooder

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    Mrs. AK-Bird-Brain :

    [​IMG]
    Please do a search for the word "cold" or "winter" or "freezing" in the topic line of the threads... there are several threads going on right now on "how cold is too cold". It has been dipping below 0F here for the last three days and the birds are fine. Give them a dry and draft house and they will be fine.
    [​IMG]

    Thanks much, I've been following some of those threads and am confused about what "draft free" means. My coop is tightly built and insulated, I have vents in the eaves, a window and the door for the birds. What I am afraid of is I live on a big windy mountain and when the wind comes whipping through the chicken door and back out the window and venting it would seem to me to be quite drafty, so how do you really make it draft free?​
     
  8. Marlinchaser

    Marlinchaser Chillin' With My Peeps

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    First thing I would do is turn off the heater, then open the door and let them decide if they want out, most likely they will, if they get too cold they will go back in the coop and warm up. I give mine the option of going out everyday(except when it was blizarding and I was afraid if I let them out they would be blown to the next county)

    Just make sure they have water all the time.
     
  9. tinkarooni

    tinkarooni Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 29, 2008
    Pittsburgh
    Quote:OK, I have buff orphingtons, chosen because they are supposed to be cold hardy (and very friendly, which they are). I do have a door for the chickens to go in and out and that's where I worry about the draft (see my last post). I have a fenced in run which is built like fort knox (my husband even buried the chiclen wire fencing and poured concrete two feet in the ground. If something gets in they deserve a chicken) I also have a fenced "pasture" or sorts that I let them free range in and scratch around in the garden. That is only when I am watching them because there is no roof on it and we are crawling with predators. So I could open the coop door and let them in their run but I am worried about the draft issue. I also as previously noted need to keep a way from the coop getting too warm, I'm working on that. I'm kind of a softies with animals, even my barn cats have little heating pads. Please don;t judge me. [​IMG]
     
  10. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

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    I covered my pop-door with a hanging towel, cuts the drafts and the birds can go in and out. You might have to stuff one or more through it to show them how, but after a while they'll get it. [​IMG]
     

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