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How much ventilation is enough in cold cold temps

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Deer lane farm, Jan 5, 2015.

  1. Deer lane farm

    Deer lane farm Out Of The Brooder

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    I just started feeling that my girls are safe and secure. I have reenforced coop in all possible ways. I have battery operated small motion lights that only come on with very close direct movement. These are great for those times I need to check on them when's its dark. I also noticed once one girl didn't get on the roost before dark and when the motion went on she jumped right up. Any way
    so now here comes the bitter winter. I have read so many threads and no heat seems the best way to go. I have 3 vents in the coop. I know you have to leave them open to keep the moisture out. But should I leave all 3 open? It is going to be 9 tonight. They are all above the roosts.
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    They'll be fine.
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    As long as the vents are not allowing a very strong draft that will literally ruffle their feathers on the roost, leave all the vents open.......they'll be fine.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2015
  4. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    You don't say how many birds, how large a coop, and how large are the vents, and are the birds cold hardy and fully feathered?
     
  5. blucoondawg

    blucoondawg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    One way I can tell if I have excessive moisture in my coop is to look inside in the morning or evening when your coop isn't in direct sunlight and see if you have a frosty glaze on your walls or ceiling inside the coop, if you do you obviously have some moisture. You won't be able to get your humidity down to zero no matter what you do unless you live in an extremely dry area. I have 69% humidity right now outside and the temp is 0. I have open soffits on my coop and sometimes it will still get excessively damp, in addition I will open a window and the pop door that gives a better flow and clears it out quite well
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2015
  6. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    If your humidity level is near equal, inside and outside the coop, your ventilation is sufficient.
     
  7. Deer lane farm

    Deer lane farm Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 26, 2014
    I have 6 chickens 2 Black sex link and 4 Rhode Island Reds they are fully feathered. The coop is a converted shed. I have 3 vents, the poop door, and two big front doors, I lock all doors up at night. There are two windows for light but they don't open.I can lock the poop door with it being cracked a little for air to get in. I'm sure I need more vents and hope to buy a window asap. I have it semi-insulated and plastic over the run and the front window. It is 7 degrees right now in NJ which is making me worried. I just went out and checked them and the temp in the coop is reading about 17. I would think more heat would stay in the coop. It was 25 degrees a few hours ago. I have the water on cinder blocks that has a lightbulb under the cinder block so the water hasn't frozen. I don't want to add heat because of all the advice not too. But I don't want them to get frost bite. All week is suppose to be in the teens. This is not the norm for NJ. Our winters usually atleast in the 20 or 30's.

    I have not seen any moisture at all on the two windows. The roof is high with a loft area.
     
  8. FrozenWings

    FrozenWings Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 20, 2013
    If you had a moisture problem, with temperatures that cold, frost would form and not leave the windows. If you had a draft directly on the birds, with temperatures below 32 F, your birds will already have had frost bite. They will be cold, but give them some extra treats. It will help if they have a roost they they all can snuggle together on. I use cedar chips on the coop floor so that their feet can stay dry and warmer after coming in from the outside. Good luck.

    -Frozen Wings
     
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Pine is usually recommended as cedar can emit toxic fumes and cause respiratory issues.
     
  10. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps



    My well ventilated coop temperatures reached 14F last night and was still 14F this morning at 8am.

    My coop humidity was 16%. No high humidity. Coop floor has not been cleaned in 14 months. There is around 12 inches of pine shavings, 10 birds, 64 square feet floor space, 17 square feet ventilation.

    They said it was in the single digits, but I cannot verify it was that cold in my backyard...

    My ventilation is my key ingredient for my success.
     

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