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How do your hens do in your Catawba coop in the winter?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kristenm1975, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. kristenm1975

    kristenm1975 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 23, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    I've built 12 of these wonderful coops and am preparing to (finally!!) build one for myself out of cedar, with all the trimmings, but am wondering how the hens do in there in the wintertime? I live in the pacific northwest, so it never gets super cold for real long, mostly just nasty rain for months on end. Last year was different though and we had snow on the ground and some really cold weather for these parts. I would love to hear how folks have dealt with that.

    Thanks! Here's a picture of the coop I'll be building:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 26, 2009
    How many chickens do you house in the Catawba Coop? And what are its dimensions?
     
  3. kristenm1975

    kristenm1975 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 23, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    I'll have four in there: one Penedesenca pullet, which is a lightweight bird; one Barnevelder, a heavier bird; one Polish, should be lightweight, and one Silkie bantam. They'll have lots of space.

    The dimensions of the run are 8 feet long by 4 feet wide. The top loft portion is 2 feet wide by 8 feet long. So they have a total of 48 square feet for the four of them, unless I'm doing my math wrong.

    I forgot to add that the whole coop is 42 inches tall.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  4. patman75

    patman75 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am building a new coop for the winter, the tractor is just thier spring/summer/fall home. I have seen youtube videos of people covering them with a tarp.
     
  5. KatyTheChickenLady

    KatyTheChickenLady Bird of A Different Feather

    Dec 20, 2008
    Boise, Idaho
    or instead of a tarp I am picturing a white tent canvas . . .
     
  6. 5littlechickens

    5littlechickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:I live in the pacific northwest too, just outside of Eugene, Oregon and was wondering what other people around here do for winterizing coops and such. It's also usually not too cold here and I think we get a little less rain than you but probably not by much. It will be our first winter with chickens and ours are still in temporary housing and I just don't know what to build for them. Is this your first winter with chickens?

    Jody
     
  7. kristenm1975

    kristenm1975 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 23, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    Hi Jody,

    This will be my second winter with chickens, but the for the first one last year, I lived out in the country on Whidbey Island and had a large proper coop and a partially covered run area for them to duck out of the weather when need be.

    This will be the first year with a chicken tractor. I'm thinking I may just put a sheet of plywood against one long side of their run on the bottom, latched on there somehow to prevent it from flying off. I saw that idea at the website for the Boughton coops from Florsham. Man, what an amazing site. I could look at those coops for hours! Wait, I have looked at them for hours already. [​IMG]
     
  8. sarahm

    sarahm Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 10, 2009
    CT
    This will our first winter with chickens, and our 4 9-week old, standard-size girls have been in the catawba coop for about 5 weeks now. They seem pretty happy and I love being able to give them fresh grass by moving the coop every day or 2. A few questions for people who have used this coop for a longer period of time:

    1. Do you use any kind of light in the roost area? If so, where and how do you affix it? I had a red 25w bulb in there for a while on a clamp light, mostly to assuage my own concerns about them being cold (irrational, I know). They all seemed to want to be near it and I figured there was minimal risk of fire with 25w. But the dark is obviously more natural and they've feathered out even more, so I recently took it out--but I might put it back when it gets really cold. My concern is that there's no good place to put it that doesn't really act as an obstruction. Any opinions on this?

    2. Do you keep food and/or water in the roost area? Are they ok without it overnight, with the ramp closed?

    3. Any brilliant suggestions for getting them not to poop on the ramp overnight?

    Thanks for the help!
     

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