Down to only two hens - will they be warm enough?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Bettylouplus4, Aug 22, 2011.

  1. Bettylouplus4

    Bettylouplus4 In the Brooder

    Aug 16, 2011
    In the Spring I purchased five chicks for my daughter. Two ended up being roosters, and, unfortunately, one of the hens died the other day. I don't know what to do now. We live in Massachusetts and it can get very cold here in the winter. I was wondering if anyone knows whether or not the two hens will be okay on their own this winter, as I will most likely have to get rid of the roosters. One hen is a Giant Cochin and the other is a Plymouth Barred Rock. The coop is 4 x 8 and is very well-insullated. Any advice for a somewhat stressed out new chicken owner would be much appreciated! What if I tried to heat the coop? Would getting more hens at this late date be a possibility? Thank you for any help and God bless.

  2. I think they should be fine. More is better for warmth but sounds like your coop is cozy. If you like having chickens why not get two or three others? Your coop is large enough.

    Ultimately you have to make that decision but if something should happen to another and you do get down to one hen, then you will be in trouble [​IMG]
  3. Noymira

    Noymira Songster

    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    Quote:I agree completely, you would probably be fine with 2 in there, but even 2 seems kind of lonely for chickens.
  4. Bettylouplus4

    Bettylouplus4 In the Brooder

    Aug 16, 2011
    I have a friend who is willing to give me some of her chickens. She has 31! They are about a year old. How do you think that will work since mine are about 17 weeks? Would I have to quarantine them? Thanks so much for your help. This is all so new to me!
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Quarantine if bringing in new birds. More would help with cold although I routinely keep single birds with minimal protection from cold other than blocking direct wind. If birds in good feather and well fed, they are very cold tolerant. Mine can handle -12 F with minimal trouble. Your setup as decribed much better than mine and your birds are also larger which is plus in respect to cold tolerance.
  6. Bettylouplus4

    Bettylouplus4 In the Brooder

    Aug 16, 2011
    If I kept one of the roosters would he be okay with two hens or would he wear them out? (I am planning to get at least six or eight chicks in the Spring.) My biggest concern with getting any chickens from my friend is the whole issue of quarantine. I don't have another place I can keep chickens for four weeks except a brooder box, which is only 2 x 3. My daughter would really like to keep her favorite of the roosters if we can. Any ideas for how to keep him without having to get six or eight more hens? Would a "single guy" roo get too lonely? Next year he would have plenty of females, provided we have better luck with our purchase than we did this year, as we ended up with two roos out of five chicks!! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2011
  7. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Crowing

    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    As long as they are dry and get out of the wind, chickens can tolerate a lot of cold.

    When it gets down to -40 or -50, I put a heat lamp in my chicken coop. It doesn't get the coop warm, but it takes the edge off the cold.

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