I live in FL and have an open coop- at what temp should I close it up?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by guesswhatchickenbutt, Nov 15, 2009.

  1. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 5, 2009
    Central FL
    I live in Central Florida and my three pet hens live in an open coop. There is a "window" type cut-out about 18 inches by 12 inches for ventilation and there is the doorway from the ramp that is about 2 feet by 12 inches. The rest of the roost/nest area is closed. The rest of the coop is open and it's just hardwire cloth. I got the chickens in March, so this will be my first winter with hens.

    At what point do I worry about them being cold?? I wonder if I should put some wood over their vent rectangle that I mentioned.... and maybe do the same with the hole at the bottom of their entry ramp. Like I said - both are just open holes now that lead into the coop that is just hardwire cloth.

    I know that I was freeeeeeeezing the other night because the temps were around 58 degrees and I was worried about the chickens, but I thought that maybe it wasn't cold for them.

    Any ideas at what temp I need to give them a sealed coop with no openings for cold air/breeze to blow in at night? I'll obviously let them out in the run in the daytime. When it gets down to the 50s at night? or the 40s? or the 30s?

    Here is a pic so you can kind of see the coop. The dark teal place with the nest boxes is the only enclosed area (but with the large open "window" and doorway leading out to the rest of the coop - not the run).

    [​IMG]

    Thanks!!!!!
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2009
  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    I'd probably put sides on when it's in the forties at night... just to stop the wind chill.
     
  3. DawnSuiter

    DawnSuiter Chillin' With My Peeps

    If your roosts & nest areas are closed in, then you have nothing to worry about!
    [​IMG]
    Your all done & buttoned up for winter!

    Seriously! They don't need anything other than that.. not even up here where a couple of weeks are freezing & below. You'll see.. they'll be out ALL winter long and just pleased as punch with it. FOR SOME REASON, if you oddly ended up with freezing or below freezing temperatures for more than a few hours in a row.. you MIGHT want to put up a little plastic.. but seriously.. only if it's a freakishly COLD COLD winter for you. Up to freezing they are fine so long as they have a place to get out of the wind if they want to and a draft free area to sleep in.

    I too have open coops.. generally they stay open except maybe some plastic for a few weeks when we're in that REALLY cold spell... but so long as they have a place to sleep that's buttoned up, then the coops stay open. One of mine has a sleeping box already and I'm working on that for the rest of them so I don't even have to consider plastic.
     
  4. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 5, 2009
    Central FL
    DawnSuiter - the big rectangular opening that we have for ventilation (I call it their window) is right next to their roosts so the air blows in to stop them from getting overheated. I worry that at night while they're sleeping on the roost that the cold air will blow in and make them too cold.... I wish I had a pic of the front so you could see....
     
  5. DawnSuiter

    DawnSuiter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Well... if you know which way the wind PREDOMINATELY blows from, you can anticipate that and only block off just enough to keep them draft free on the roosts/nests... or for instance only close up the TOP half with plywood or plastic so the air can still move on the bottom half where they don't perch (unless they do, then apply this to whereever the perches are)

    A cool breeze is fine, but a cold breeze will probably cause some stress.. so yeah.. block off the breeze not necessarily the whole coop... does that make sense!?!!

    [​IMG] Oh.. and we don't like photo excuses around here [​IMG] you get on out there and get a new picture of the front [​IMG]
     

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