how cold is too cold?


11 Years
Sep 16, 2008
Bonner springs KS
Ok I know the average chicken can take and average winter if you provide shelter. How cold does it have to be before I really worry about my chickens being hurt or killed by the temperature? My birds will have a shelter, food all the time and water with a electric water melter in it. I am sure my birds will be fine but my neighbors think its going to be crule to leave my chickens out side in the winter. Ok so how cold is too cold out side?
How cold is too cold in a shed with out heat?
Thank you all for your advise!
My mother has chickens that are completely free range, as in, no coop, nothing. They manage just fine down to upper 20's as far as i can tell.
Last year I had three chickens that would not go in a coop, They would roost in a pine tree right by my bedroom window. Every morning between 3:30 and 4 A M the roo sounded off. I have seen them covered with snow, only to shake it off and come out of the tree. Last winter it got down in the teens a few times.
For me anything below -65F is to cold to be outside. Our chickens don't care to go outside if it gets below -15F. Its currently +30F and we have 6 roosting outdoors the others all decided to go inside .

Every chicken is different, but you will likely notice a drop in egg production. just keep the shed free of drafts and the water liquid and they should do just fine.
Its as I suspected temp wise. Their pen now has wind and rain protection but I am building a shed on the end of it that. Thank you all for your real life examples.
Here in South Dakota, it sometimes gets down to -30F. My birds do well in an unheated barn, but they eat extra feed at such extreme temps. It's very important to keep water for them also. Sometimes I supplement their feed with hamburger or other high protein/fat food.

My peafowl will roost outside 30/40 feet up in a large tree in the worst weather imaginable. Doesn't seem to hurt them a bit. We feed them inside, and try to trap them in the barn when we know it's going to be extra cold.

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