How will my chickens do in snow?

cluckmecoop7

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Both breeds heavy bodied and suited to a winter climate. They probably won't like snow, but they live with it. I'm not sure what you mean when you ask what they are going to do all winter... the same things they do in summer, eat, drink, poop, scratch around.

Thanks for the quick reply!
But there are no bugs in winter....
And, another question: How do I make sure they don't get frostbite?
 

wyoDreamer

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My first batch of "Special Browns" and Saggita were OK with snow - they were not out making snow angels or anything, but they would go out in the run on sunny days and scratch around. This second set of "Special Browns" won't go outside if there is ANY white on the ground - not doing it, no how, no way. I actually went out a couple of times last winter and shoveled some ground for them so they could get some vitamin D.
We will see what the Sapphire gems think of the snow this winter.

I guess it depends on your flock.
At the first snow fall, go out and throw some scratch out there - just to make them get into the snow.
 

DobieLover

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REALLY? My neighbors dog likes to eat snow, but I never knew chickens did!
Yep. You'll see a lot of little bite marks out of the snow.
Some chickens don't mind the snow as much as others. Shoveling paths for them will get them out.
IMG_20190202_162130476.jpg
IMG_20190202_162007162.jpg
 

cluckmecoop7

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My first batch of "Special Browns" and Saggita were OK with snow - they were not out making snow angels or anything, but they would go out in the run on sunny days and scratch around. This second set of "Special Browns" won't go outside if there is ANY white on the ground - not doing it, no how, no way. I actually went out a couple of times last winter and shoveled some ground for them so they could get some vitamin D.
We will see what the Sapphire gems think of the snow this winter.

I guess it depends on your flock.
At the first snow fall, go out and throw some scratch out there - just to make them get into the snow.
Ok, I'll do that! Thanks for the info.
 

HuffleClaw

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Ridgerunner

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Are both those breeds good for 'winter climate'? What are my Buff Orpington's and Golden Laced Wyandotte's going to do all winter?

They may do great in your climate, they may not. That's not because of breed but how will you house and manage them? If they have decent wind protection and good ventilation they can do great. How many chickens you have and how much room is available to them makes a big difference. The tighter they are squeezed the more likely you are to have issues.

Will they like snow? If not what do I do?

Chickens don't like change. When mine wake up to a white world they avoid it like the plague for a couple of days. Eventually some of mine will go out in it but not necessarily all of them. I think it helps when grass or weeds are sticking through so they have a reason to go out and forage some. We all have different conditions, if yours are confined to a barren run with nothing but snow in it they are less likely to go out.

My chickens were outside when this snow (about 1") started falling. The change was gradual enough that they just stayed out in it. If this snow had fallen overnight they would not have been out in it.


Snow Feb 2013.JPG


How do I make sure they don't get frostbite?

Frostbite is the biggest risk. They are like you, there is a risk of frostbite anytime the temperature is below freezing. But you don't get frostbite every time you go out in freeing temperatures. They don't either. But if you put water on exposed skin you are at a tremendous risk for frostbite. You need to manage moisture in the coop. The best way to do that is to provide plenty of ventilation but don't allow a cold wind to hit them, especially on the roost. Moisture can come from their breath, poop, their drinking water, spilled or leaking drinking water, or rain or snow blowing in. The way I manage that is to have opening s well over their heads when they are on the roosts.
 

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