Do I need to keep a light on all night in a window-less coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by crazy4eggsJulie, May 16, 2009.

  1. crazy4eggsJulie

    crazy4eggsJulie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 15, 2009
    We converted a storage building into a coop. The chicks roam free in a fenced area during the day. We lock them in the coop at night for safety. There are not windows in the coop, so it is pitch black until I come in and release them the next morning. They don't seem to use the roosts and are all huddled together when I come in in the mornings. Then, when they can see the light coming in from the open door, they race to the feeder like they couldn't see it all night or something.

    I read a little about keeping a light on to increase egg production, but we don't care about that. Ours are just for fun. I was wondering if I am supposed to keep a light on just for them to see or if it is necessary to add a window?
    Any advice would be greatly apprecaited!
  2. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    You could add a light or window if you wanted. Don't think it is neccesary. I also use a windowless shed, and I do have a light in it. It may help the chickens find the roosts.

    Imp- looking for that perfect window to add as well.

    Oh! and Welcome to BYC
    Last edited: May 16, 2009
  3. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    Quote:I would add the largest window I could fit, and put screens in it for the warm season. Latch on to the notion of a "fresh air" coop and you'l be on the right track.
    So, do they need a night lite? No, not really. The winter addition of light extends the daylight cycle and stimulates egg production in that off season - but as you said, thats not your worry.

    Because they are chicks they havent learned to use the roosts yet. As they get bigger, they begin wanting to "go up," and will ge the hang of it.
    You can erect them a simple gangplank to help them get up there.
    Last edited: May 16, 2009
  4. chickflick

    chickflick Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 10, 2007
    If you let them put themselves to bed, they should be ok . Let them go in and get up on the roosts and settle down before you shut them up. Chickens don't usually eat during the night anyways. Maybe you could put a small window in soon! Not too hard to do.
  5. greenguys

    greenguys Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 10, 2009
    until you can figure out how to build a small window, you could set a solar light out in the sun all day then take it into the shed at night.

    Heck, make an entire chandelier out of solar lights! LOL
  6. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    Do you have any ventilation in this shed? That would be my biggest concern.
  7. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    While chickens do not normally eat at night (like, REAL night, when it is full dark outside), they do need to be able to see well enough to get onto the roost as it's getting dark and to get off and wander around and eat etc before you let them out in the morning. Remember chickens have lousy night vision so what's merely dim to you is *dark* to them.

    You don't need a nightlight, whatcha need is a lot more ventilation (which would also let light in) and possibly a window too.

    Remember that chicks generally need to be taught to use the roost -- that means going in there and manually placing them on it after dark every night til they start 'putting themselves to bed' on their own (which may be in a day or a week or more, it depends, but it WILL happen)

    Good luck, have fun,

  8. Windwhistlefarm

    Windwhistlefarm Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 14, 2009
    Modoc Indiana
    A chandelier of solar lights add the "glo balls" wow a very pregnant idea-I'm flat going for it!!!!!!!!!
    Thanks guys!

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