How cold is too cold in the coop?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cricketmt, Nov 5, 2015.

  1. cricketmt

    cricketmt Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 22, 2015
    Montana
    I have asked this before and not really gotten much of an answer.

    We have a remote thermometer in our 4'x8' coop. East side eaves are fully vented 4" high by 8' length of wall. One West side vent is open most of the way, 4" high by about 2 feet.

    We have some gaps around the door, I've closed the gaps in the window and next box. Humidity appears good, there's no condensation on walls or window.

    This morning we had 28 degrees and the coop was 31 inside. The thermometer base sits nearish the door so may be a bit affect by the gaps.

    If it's 3 degrees different at 28 degrees, will it only be 3 degrees different at -25? Cause that's coming.

    Should I be concerned? How cold IS too cold in the coop?

    ETA: We have 2 full size and 2 bantam hens.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2015
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Ventilation is always more important than warmth. Even more important than food and water.
    It hit -20 here a couple years ago with big open windows on East and West walls with no birds lost.
    We have much higher humidity year round than you.
    I usually have more birds in buildings than you.
    I use one of those remote thermometers in the farthest coop that often serves as a brooder house.

    IMHO, your biggest issue is to keep the water in liquid form.
    Wide roosts so they can cover their toes.
    Cover snow with straw so they don't have to stand on the snow.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2015
  3. cricketmt

    cricketmt Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 22, 2015
    Montana
    Thank you!

    Our absolute humidity in winter here is VERY low, generally 10-20%. Cracked hands and feet and bloody noses result, but it keeps life interesting.

    I've yet to decide on water in the coop. Their light is timed to come on before dawn since our days are so short, so I know they need water. So far it hasn't even come close to skimming over with ice, so okay for now. We have a heated waterer for outside the coop.

    We used 2x4's on their sides (wide side for the birds to stand on) for the roosts.

    And yes, I bought two bales of straw for the hens (and 2 for the dogs!) and will flake it out over the snow.

    I was pleased on Tuesday to go home and see that we'd planned well so far. One long side faces east and the north end is the garage wall. We have a nice overhang on the roof for shade in summer and the way the snow came in, we had the who underside of the coop dry for them as well as out at least 4 feet from the coop wall that the snow hadn't gotten because of the overhang. They seem happy as can be!


    ETA: I do plan to shovel snow for them as necessary too...and they have other stuff in the run for them to hang out on/under/in. We have a couple of pallets in various configurations, as well as some stumps and logs.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2015
  4. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Sounds good.
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Temp and humidity is usually close to the same inside the coop as outside if you've got enough ventilation.
    I've got a remote temp/humidity sensor in the coop and that's what I've seen...course there's a bit of lag between the two.
     

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