Heating a VERY small coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ChickenWisperer, Dec 9, 2010.

  1. ChickenWisperer

    ChickenWisperer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2008
    Any ideas for heating a tiny coop? One that fits only 5 birds at the MOST. This is a "recovery coop" for birds that need time away from the others.

    I can't put a heatlamp in because A) The "coop" would probably catch fire and B) I think it would be too hot for the chooks.
  2. purr

    purr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 30, 2008
    east freetown, ma
    If it's that small they will keep each other warm, and chickens do not need heat
  3. Ohhhdear

    Ohhhdear Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 15, 2010
    West Michigan
    Make a cookie-tin water heater, but just put it into the coop. A 45 to 60 watt light bulb should make the tin warm enough to keep the birds really warm without burning down the coop. They bunch up around and on top of it.

    Yes, chickens don't need heat to survive a winter, but if they're recovering from something or you want them to keep being productive, giving them additional warmth makes sense to me. Instead of using their food calories to just stay warm, they can also keep laying.
  4. Mac in Wisco

    Mac in Wisco Antagonist

    May 25, 2007
    SW Wisconsin
    Perhaps a small heated mat under the litter?
  5. Kansaseq

    Kansaseq Prairie Wolf Farm Asylum

    Feb 12, 2009
    NE Kansas
    I read about using a 5 gallon bucked of hot water, with a lid. The lid keeps the humidity in, while the thermal mass of the bucket slowly heats the coop.
  6. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
  7. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    What are the dimensions of "very small" (height, width and length)?

    Heating can be appropriate for birds that are not cold hardy, for birds that are ill, for birds that are molting and not cold tolerant during that time.

    I just have 2 birds and they are in a 4x6x8 foot high coop and I do provide heat when they need it (easy to tell when they're uncomfortable). Because of the nice height it was easy for me to suspend a ceramic heat lamp (a ceramic bulb that provides heat, not light) so that it touches nothing, including them, and so that it cannot be knocked down. My coop is inside a larger unheated building so I find that one lamp does the trick inside the coop but when I had a free standing coop I had 3 ceramic heat lamps and I could choose to use 1, 2 or 3 depending upon the weather conditions. I also have/had a light in the coops that could be used separately from the heat lamps.

    In your situation if heat lamps wouldn't work, you could possible insulate?

    Last edited: Dec 9, 2010
  8. ChickenWisperer

    ChickenWisperer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2008
    Quote:Thanks for the ideas. I'm sorry, but I do believe my chooks need the heat. Most of the breeds I keep aren't cold hardy, or are in the middle of molt. These particular birds were pecked on by the others and are partially naked.

    I like the idea with the lightbulb, but I'm afraid they will burn themselves. I love the Idea with the water, but I don't think there's enough space in the coop for it - and I don't know where to get a "jug" that size. I like the idea of the heating pad... but they are chickens, and the only problem is the fire hazard, and the fact I can't find any non-timed heating pads (I've tried to find them for my hedgies to no avail).

    The coop is 4x4x4. However, the ceiling is a bit higher, but I'm not sure how much. What is a ceramic heater? I've only ever had the light bulbs with red on them.

    I do plan to "insulate" it by stapling feed sacks all around it. The coop itself is very airy - it's made from pallet wood (yeah, we were tryin' to be eco friendly). Right now we have a tarp over it but I don't think it's enough. I've checked on them and seen them shivering... needless to say they come in that night.
  9. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    You could insulate it by piling bales of hay or straw all around. You could probably even put one on top. Just don't forget to allow for ventilation.
  10. swimmer

    swimmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 17, 2010
    Don't need heat.

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