How many hens?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Caleb999, Oct 4, 2015.

  1. Caleb999

    Caleb999 Chirping

    Hi there,
    I have a fully insulated 12' by 8' coop. I use straw for extra heat, and have nesting boxes off the ground. I also have a 2' by 4' insulated box inside of this coop. How many hens do I need to make sure I have enough heat. I don't want to use a heater, and I only have winter hardy breeds.
    Thanks
     

  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Crowing

    23,114
    7,827
    491
    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    About 20 to 24 should be a good number. The biggest threat to chickens in really cold weather is frostbite. A well ventilated coop is essential to prevent frostbite. Lots and lots of ventilation, as high up as you can possibly get is best. You'll need roosts wide enough for them to cover up their feet completely. 2x4s wide side up are a perfect way to achieve that.
     
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    24,615
    20,493
    892
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    Chickens don't heat the coop, they heat themselves, and do it quite efficiently, I wouldn't add chickens just for heat, crowding is a way worse offense. Feed them correctly, proper roosts, warm water, good ventilation, access to sunshine, protection from winds, and stuff to do so they aren't bored.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by