Inside or outside in winter?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jennmugg, Sep 14, 2009.

  1. jennmugg

    jennmugg In the Brooder

    Apr 2, 2009
    Titusville Florida
    My girls have their summer home, just a basic coop with wire along the top for ventilation, sitting on top of a large covered run, so that they can go into it whenever they want, and a trap door I can close at night.

    I have a poll barn that I can move the coop into if needed.

    What should I do for the winter? Leave the coop outside so that they can be out during the day, or is it safer to keep them in the poll barn all the time? We don't have any wind barriers and i'm not planning on heating the coop or the barn. I don't want them to freeze or get frost bite.

  2. Amethyste

    Amethyste For Love of Boo...

    Well, my circumstances are a bit different than yours.... we dont get anywhere near the bitter cold that you must get at times!

    However, we have a permanent coop with a run attached. The door is always open for them to go into the run during the day. Raining, snowing, ice, whatever...its open. Only time it isnt is when the weather is REALLY bad, ie high winds, freakishly low temps, ice storms....cos they wont go out anyway in that weather. we dont have insulation in it, and it isnt heated either.

    But my girls happily have gone out in the rain, in the wind, in the snow and ice. They were NOT impressed earlier this year when we had almost 2 feet of snow. they decided they would stay inside thank you muchly.

    Where you are tho... my personal feeling would be to move them into the barn for now. If the weather is good then maybe move them out for the day?
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2009
  3. Olive Hill

    Olive Hill Crowing

    Apr 19, 2009
    I leave the coop door open just as I do in summer, they have the option to go out if they choose or can stay in if they prefer. (I'm in MI so a similar climate)
  4. Monk

    Monk Songster

    May 10, 2009
    Quote:Same here.
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    This is a small reach-in, tractor style coop, yes?

    They're hard to manage during the winter in the North. It can be challenging (at best) to balance air quality (=ventilation) vs no drafts on chickens vs indoor temperature.

    Any possibility of putting the coop right up *against* the pole barn for the winter, on the S or SE side? Or, if the pole barn is partly open and thus not too dark inside, actually putting the tractor in there but in a relatively more open and brighter part? Or putting it in there but rigging a small popdoor thru the polebarn wall to a small extra run outside?

    (e.t.a. - if the coop is outside, you can put heavy translucent plastic on the upwind side(s) of the run portion, to make it more appealing for the chickens to go out. Don't wrap it all the way around however as that'll create humidity problems)

    You do have options, and it is good that you are thinking about this now.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Last edited: Sep 14, 2009

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