Is Coop artificial lighting needed during the winter months?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Koolaid, Aug 20, 2010.

  1. Koolaid

    Koolaid In the Brooder

    Jul 11, 2010
    We get about 10 hours, at best, of natural light during the winter months - is that enough for continued egg production? I have a nice solid coop with some vents and even a clear plastic skylight - but dark is dark and I don't know if I should install lighting or not. Need some idea's please.
  2. slackwater

    slackwater Songster

    Feb 1, 2010
    my hens slow down, but don't stop completely, w/o any extra lighting during teh winter
  3. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    You will most likely get eggs, but not as many as in seasons with longer days. So you can wait and see how they do, and then supplement your lighting if it's not to your liking... Your skylight will help. Some folks make due with reduced egg production to give the birds a rest over the winter months, while others supplement to try to keep the eggs flowing. Keep in mind that your hens are born with a set number of eggs available...
  4. SunnyDawn

    SunnyDawn Sun Lovin' Lizard

    Sep 12, 2009
    Nor Cal
    10 hours are not enough. I do supplement light during winter. The light goes on about 5am and off again at 8am. This is enough to keep my BOs laying (they are good winter layers). Some folks feel like a bird deserves a winter rest but I can't live without at least a few fresh eggs and while my BOs are great winter layers they pretty much quit for 2 months during the summer heat so I feel like they get enough rest then. [​IMG]
    Hens need between 12 and 16 hours of light depending on the breed. 16 hours are considered ideal but like I said, I can get a few eggs out of my Orps with 12 hours of light.
  5. Koolaid

    Koolaid In the Brooder

    Jul 11, 2010
    good thoughts - thanks ya'll. I have 8 hens and I think I'd get enough eggs to keep us in eggs (we don't sell or anything like that).
  6. Knock Kneed Hen

    Knock Kneed Hen California Dream'in Chickens

    Feb 15, 2010
    So. Cal.
    Quote:I didn't know that hens are born with a set number of eggs available. [​IMG] My friends and family are probably not interested in this tidbit of information but you can be sure I will tell everyone I know about this! [​IMG]
  7. GrandmaAnn

    GrandmaAnn In the Brooder

    Aug 19, 2010
    We set our lights up on a timer to go on about 4 a.m. in the winter, then they go off about 9 a.m. I go down to the coop between 8 and 9 for the first time to collect eggs and bring fresh water down. Then, I go again around 3-4 p.m. to bring more fresh water and collect eggs again. In the winter, we use dog bowls that are heated as waterers. Winters get pretty cold here in Wisconsin, and birds will not lay at all if they don't get enough light and enough fresh water.

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