Extreme Cold

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ghostwolf211, Jan 1, 2014.

  1. ghostwolf211

    ghostwolf211 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chickens have been doing well in the cold conditions we've been having....But Tomorrow night and Friday it's going to be around 0 degrees with wind chills around -13 to -20....Should I put my heat lamps out to help them with the extreme cold?
     
  2. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    This year, we have had numerous temperature well below zero, not counting the wind.... it has been considerably colder than last year. Several days the highs were below zero, just a cold winter.

    Last year, on the few days that it got cold, the little black dots of frostbite showed up on their combs. This year so far, nothing and my Delaware roo still has all the points on his comb!

    What did I do different? Not more heat..... more ventilation, the coop needs to be dry. Opening the window and letting the moisture out has really worked for me.

    Now Pennsylvania might be more humid, and a heat lamp might help dry things out, but beware of fires.

    Most of the more experienced chicken owners, say no to heat, yes to ventilation.

    Mrs K
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

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    For what it's worth, wind chill applies only to exposed human flesh. As was mentioned, if they have been OK so far, they will be fine. After all, they have these fabulous down comforters keeping them warm.

    Chris
     
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    No I disagree.
    Animals need to be out of the wind, the wind can strip their body heat away from them, just like humans. In nature, animals will chose areas that are protected from the wind naturally. If you have confined animals, and can offer wind protection they will have less energy needs.

    Coops need to be well ventilated, but need to be a wind shelter, where a the birds can get out of the wind.

    Mrs K
     
  5. DLV58

    DLV58 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi, its hard not to worry about the cold !
    I can't believe that my girls are doing great in below zero weather with no heat
    They have a good wind shelter/coop
    and 3 are still laying most every day
     
  6. suzMEchicks

    suzMEchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm very worried about the cold. We haven't had such a cold winter as this for years. But doesn't it figure we do the first year I have chickens! Today it was - 4 but tonight is supposed to go down to -20. Is it wind chill or just temp? Let's face it. It's cold! I do have a regular light bulb in my 5by5 coop. Right now the inside temp is 20. Today I did a little maintenance , cleaned it out and put down new dry hay and pine shavings. Its all closed up tight for the night because the blizzard is really supposed to howl tonight. That's all I can do.
     
  7. rugbyrebel

    rugbyrebel Out Of The Brooder

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    May 21, 2013
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    I'm concerned as well... My coop is unheated, uninsulated (but double thick solid wood walls and tons of ventilation, no drafts). I covered a few vents right behind the roosts today and hung some plastic to cut the coop size in half. Just checked the inside thermometer and it says -17! I think it's supposed to go down to -22 tonight and next weekend. The lowest I've seen it is -14. So far no frost bite this winter and they seem okay but definitely slow down when it gets below -10.

    It's just soooo cold. Anyone consistently have their coop this cold over the years no problem? I'm debating on adding heat this weekend but prefer not to. I know there are some Alaskan and northern province chicken keepers that dont use heat.... but wonder how cold their coops actually get (based in design).
     
  8. suzMEchicks

    suzMEchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm in Southern Maine. I see you are even further up north than we are! Usually we have a few nites below 0. Like one or two 3 below nights. This year is crazy. Has been day after day of single digits and below zero. Many more than 10 below. We are usually 10-30 degrees. I only have 6 chickens and so far they are doing well. They are giving 3-6 eggs a day. I think thats a good sign.
     
  9. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Suz, is that with light? My girls are not doing so well in the egg department. - 10 here in Winterport.
     
  10. suzMEchicks

    suzMEchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 9, 2013
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    Yes I put it on a timer when the light started fading in the fall but I don't know if it's me or the timer I bought but it wasnt always on when I thought it should be . So now especially with the cold, I have it on all the time. They dont seem to mind.
     

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