Freezing temps - should I keep chickens in coop?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jimandcaitlin, Jan 5, 2015.

  1. jimandcaitlin

    jimandcaitlin In the Brooder

    May 10, 2014
    We have a cold front coming in and it's going to be way below freezing all week. I hate keeping them cooped up, but I'm worried about them getting frostbite or worse. Should I kepe them in the coop until it warms up? It will be back into the 20's by Friday, so it would just be for a few days. Thanks!
  2. JMcGuire

    JMcGuire In the Brooder

    Jan 5, 2015
    sackets harbor, NY
    That's personal preference I think to be honest. I'd say if they want to come out for a little, I'd let them. Mine always let me know when it's a day they wanna just hang out inside. Maybe provide them with snacks as toys to keep them busy and not feeling cooped up? I live in Upstate NY, and it's 14 degrees this morning, and they all came out this morning. Food for thought ♡
  3. Troubadour05

    Troubadour05 In the Brooder

    Oct 13, 2014
    Greenfield, NH
    Were supposed to have a high of 32 today where I am in NH but with 24 mph winds so my girls are staying in! :)
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    Chickens know more about being a chicken than people do. Let them make the choice. A LOT of bad behaviors start when people keep chickens too close together. Unless your coop is HUGE, space is more important than temperature. If they get cold, they will go in out of the wind. Trapping them in there is not a good idea.

    Mrs K
    3 people like this.
  5. Troubadour05

    Troubadour05 In the Brooder

    Oct 13, 2014
    Greenfield, NH
    Oh no, mine have a chicken door that is open all the time, by saying they are staying in I meant they are choosing to stay in, not that I've kept them in, didnt mean to confuse you guys!
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana

    I took this photo a few years back when it was 4 degrees above zero Fahrenheit. I open the pop door in the morning and let them decide what to do. They don’t like a strong cold wind but as long as the wind is not blowing pretty strong, they choose to go outside.
  7. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    Mine chose to go out the other day when it was -11.
  8. DaveOmak

    DaveOmak Songster

    May 18, 2013
    Omak, Washington
    My Coop
    My chicken coop pop door is always open.... They wander out in the morning and stay out until sunset... even when the temps are 12 degrees.... they know what to do... they are naturally "wild" birds... I would let them decide where to be....
    1 person likes this.
  9. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida

    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    My pop door is always open, too. They come and go as they choose, but they almost always choose the run no matter what the temperatures are running. We've been as low as 20 degrees below zero already this winter and they just don't want to stay in the coop unless they're laying or roosting. They know what they want to do.
  10. coonhoundmama87

    coonhoundmama87 Songster

    Oct 26, 2011
    Most of my birds have the option as most are free range. One coop is always open and they never go out when its cold or snowy. My banty coop I sometimes leave shut. They won't go out anyways. But its mostly because I have an older laying hen who was a pet in there who only has one eye who tends to stay out in bad weather and she worries me. Its really a chicken to chicken basis. Even my free range birds will stay in most of the time on bad days like today (currently -10 actual temp).

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