how cold is too cold for chickens

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by boykin2010, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. boykin2010

    boykin2010 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    it has started to get about 35 degrees here at night. do i need to go buy a heatlamp and put it in there or are they okay. they have a very secure coop with no windows so there is no drafts
     
  2. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    35?? that's beach weather for my birds--we're already in the low 20's at night. They'll take it to 20 below with no heat so don't plan on adding any. Make sure your coop isn't so airtight that moisture can't escape--it should be vented. Otherwise they'll be fine.
     
  3. Minniechickmama

    Minniechickmama Senora Pollo Loco

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    As Woodmort said, you need ventilation.
    I had 7 chickens in their small coop (4-foot by 6-foot) the door was open every day during the winter. When it started dropping below zero I added a heat lamp and they did great, not even any frostbite. If it gets to a point of freezing their water, you want to get some kind of water heater to keep it thawed, it is very important they have water all of the time, they lose most of theirs through breathing and again, that creates a high moisture level. My girls loved the cold so much, they STARTED laying when it was 20 below zero. So, you tell me, how cold is too cold? [​IMG]
    Good luck.
     
  4. HorizonSon

    HorizonSon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Please, please, keep in mind it varies from need to breed. Some are very hardy and robust; while others not as much. Some handle cold better; some handle heat better. While still; some handle both fairly well. Looking up your specific need should help. If they have HUGE combs and wattles, then be careful with sub-freezing temperatures; especially with a small flock.
     
  5. HorizonSon

    HorizonSon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh; winter time is a great time to give them grains; first thing in the morning, and again just before they roost for the night. This is typically when we toss out some scratch for ours. The rest of the day they happily free-range [​IMG]


    Edited to add: the grains will boost their core temp up quite a bit. (reason to be careful where It's very hot during the summer)
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2010
  6. boykin2010

    boykin2010 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    the coop isnt air tight because it attached to a run so one side is comepletely open. most of my breeds dont have large combs except my buff orp she has the largest comb. Since i live in south ga 35 is abnormal weather for us everyone here is freaking out because none of us own jackets lol... luckily i hunt a lot so i wore a pair of coveralls hunting this morning and i was fine. i was just making sure about the chickens and i am new to this so i was just making sure thank you
     
  7. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think it's safe to say that in S. GA or anyplace south of the Mason/Dixon Line there is no chance any breed of chicken is going to have any problems from winter weather as long as they can get out of the wind. Probably most north of that line are safe inside a well ventilated coop as well. The common cold related problem is frostbitten combs and wattles which is related to moisture not cold. A chicken's body is well protected from cold by feathers and down.
     
  8. Minniechickmama

    Minniechickmama Senora Pollo Loco

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    Boykin,
    You have more to worry about being in a hot climate and keeping them cool in the summer than from getting cold. I lost 3 this summer when it stayed up in the 90s for too long.
     
  9. boykin2010

    boykin2010 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    wow and you live in minnesota Minniechickmama!
     
  10. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    If you provide a draft free well ventilated coop and feed adequately chickens can deal with temperatures far below 35 degree F. Adding supplementary heat may cause more problems than doing any good.
     

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