Back in March, I purchased chicks. They have been a joy and have been a healthy, easy flock to raise. We had our first snowstorm (if you consider less than 3 inches a snowstorm ) and most of the ladies acted scared to death to touch the stuff. Four of them got under the coop for bed the first night, and I left them there because I couldn't reach them. The next morning I checked on them, and they were still under the coop, but I was able to flush them out before work. Well, I am assuming the evil white stuff scared them again, and sometime (and I have to assume immediately) after I left, back under the coop they went. When I got home, there they were. I get home after dark everyday. Out comes the broom, flashlight, daughter, and me to get to work getting them out from under the coop. I tucked them in safely in the coop for the night. Now, in the days before this snowstorm, I have setup the heated base for their waterer because it was cold enough to freeze. I moved their waterer inside the coop, showed them where it was and have personally witnessed each one of them drink. I come home from work yesterday, surprisingly enough before dark, and one of the buff orpingtons has a naked neck. That fast. Fine one day, naked the next. I see no sign of injury. I asked my husband, who is home about two hours before dark every day, and he has not observed any sign of picking from the other girls. I have to assume that she was stressed by the "snowstorm" and that forced her into molting during her first winter. However, I am suspicious of something else, and I'd like an opinion from you. Since I have moved their water, their water usage has dropped a lot. I am getting a severe reduction in egg production (avg of 7 eggs a day has fallen to 2). Is it possible that they are not drinking because the water is in the coop now as opposed to outside? I took some water out there this morning in a shallow dish and put it outside. There was a stampede I tell you. They were drinking from the stream I was pouring. I personally showed everyone of them the new location of their water, is it possible that they "forgot"? If so, should I continue to carry fresh water out there every morning and take it up every evening so that I KNOW that they are drinking? I hate the idea that I wasted the money on this heated base, but if this is what I need to do I will. I don't know if they will figure it out on their own or not. Please let me know if you have had an experience like this. Thanks!