Has anyone used their basement?


12 Years
Jan 17, 2010
Wittmann, AZ
We moved out from Phoenix, to Indiana and so my girls are NOT used to the weather change. So as spoiled as they are on cold nights I bring in all my chickens & ducks. They all get kenneled up with a partner and are put in the kitchen. So yes on a cold night if you come to my home you have to duck and weave through all the kennels, lol.

In phoenix they free ranged on five acres...... In Indiana they are stuck in little coops outside because city ordinance they are not allowed out at any time. . . . .

SOOOOOO I was thinking, we have a BIG unfinished basement. . . so what if I put my birds down there with some kind of lighting that would replicate sun???

Would that be inhumane? I mean the floor is concrete but we have a drain so I thought when the floor got dirty I could just wash the dooodie down the drain? I'm not sure what kind of lighting I would need either. ??? I wanted to put some kind of sunlight bulb on a timer & set it to go on and off with our sunrise & sunset. (I don't want to confuse their seasons)

NOW this would only be until spring when we get to return to AZ. Would it work you think, and if so what kind of lighting do you use?

They are ALL currently very unhappy. I know this because my birds are very sweet usually and now when I go out to feed and water them they all peck and bite me! Not to mention the whole time they are all trying to escape. I feel that being penned up is really driving them crazy. I'm just looking for a little relief & escape for them.
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right now I have only have 4 two runner ducks and two hens. my basement area is about 12 foot by 30 foot? rough guesstimate?

I also have dogs that get kenneled to at night, & my daughters dog drives us nuts whinning trying to get the birds. My kitchen area is about 3 foot wide, by 8 foot long?
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I would do it! The other option is a play pen so they could be outside on nice days. I have an 8x8 only 2 foot high I put the Silkies and Showgirls in to play in the yard. You of course would have to have some netting on top, my birds don't jump the 2 ft. Shh don't tell them they can. As far as lighting it would depend on just how cool the basement gets. I use the red bulbs on mine at night and flood lights during the day IF needed.
Good luck and safe travels when you move.
A flood light? Ok! Our basement is heated actually, so when I brought them in today (it's snowing out) I put them down there so I didn't have to listen to the one dog whine. That's what made me start thinking about keeping them down there. I won't tell your girls if you don't! lol Mine know they can jump unfortunately so we were thinking chicken wire or something to keep my girls away from the heater & such. I think i'm going to check out what it would actually take to keep them safe down there. I know the farm store has heat lamps on sale for 7 dollars right now with a bulb for them for a buck fifty. Think i'm going to hit the farm store at least lol

I miss our little silky! We had a white rooster last year, and unfortunately no one liked him & on a very cold night the girls kicked him out of the roost & he got frost bite so bad we lost him? Freak of nature below freezing in the desert one time.

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I would do it then...beware of all the dust and dander these birds will create...if you have any breathing issues or allergies take precautions and wear masks while cleaning up.
If you were to do this, seal your concrete floor first. Just because the poo washes down the drain doesn't mean the stink will. The nastiness will sink into the porus concrete. Add lots of light. Also, check out how dry other's basements are. In my area, everyone who has a basement has issues with moisture. Good luck!
OK! masks for cleaning never thought of that, because i'm so used to the smell while cleaning. Right now I have to clean their coops every few days to try and keep the moisture down so they don't freeze, so hopefully it won't be to different.
People here have dry issues too. That is why I didn't do it when we moved in because I thought an unfinished basement? It's gotta flood because most do. BUT we've had so much rain here and it's kept dry every time. As for sealing the floor we're not allowed to make any modifications like that to the house, so maybe I can figure something out for the smell? That is a good point though about the smell, and i'm not trying to ruin any part of this house. It was oober hard finding anyone to even rent to us knowing I had my birds.

We are super clean and clean all dog mess, & coops every two or three days tops. We can't go any longer because we don't like the smell, so maybe I can find something to put down to help like maybe a tarp and litter on top? Then it's just a matter of cleanin up that? They have rolls of linoleum at the dollar store? Maybe a roll or two of that down?
OK! masks for cleaning never thought of that, because i'm so used to the smell while cleaning.
Right now I have to clean their coops every few days to try and keep the moisture down so they don't freeze,

so hopefully it won't be to different.​

Sounds like you need more ventilation in their coops. If you add more your chickens will handle the cold weather much better.

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