Is two chickens enough in the cold?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by BlueMouse, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. BlueMouse

    BlueMouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We're just picking up our first two chickens this coming weekend, and I'm concerned about the temperature. We live in upstate ny, days are still frequently in the 20's ad 30's, and a night it's well below freezing. Will it be ok with just the two of them in the chicken house at night for right now? Or should I attempt to get a couple more to keep them company? we were planning on starting our flock in april at our local swap, but a great gentle Buff Orpington rooster paired with a hen came up for sale, and I couldn't resist....

    I hope I'm posting in the right section? If not can someone direct me to a better section? I'm a new forum member!
     
  2. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome to BYC. Your question is a management issue, so its the right place.

    Of the house is well built one could do alright with temperatures in the 20s. Two of course will do better. Since these are your first chickens I think getting the whole number you want now, would be advisable. That way you won't have to do an integration latter.
     
  3. ChucktheChick

    ChucktheChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The coop
    great post! Btw
     
  4. ChucktheChick

    ChucktheChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The coop
    :welcome
     
  5. BlueMouse

    BlueMouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    well, I'm getting the two sunday come what may, I was just wondering if I needed to absolutely scramble to get them a couple friends, or if they'd be ok until april when our first area swap/tailgate sale is. Chicken house is half of an old shed. It's tight, and in a sheltered location, but not insulated. It just seemed like two chickens in an 8x10 area might not be enough body heat. The chickens in question are Buff Orpingtons, so they have a bit more body mass and are supposed to be cold hardy, but still...
     
  6. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Opingtons out of the wind and drafts will do fine. Chickens have great down coats after all.
     
  7. BlueMouse

    BlueMouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    see, the only bird of any kind I have any experience with are parrots, and they may have nice down coats, but they are still insanely fragile [​IMG].... Obviously chickens are of a sturdier make, but I still find myself worrying if they'll be warm enough and testing their housing arrangements for drafts [​IMG]....
     
  8. DSApps

    DSApps New Egg

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    You can find a heat lamp for them quite easily, and they will appreciate it very much! If they get cold they will learn to get under it, if they are comfortable they will sit further away. It will also help keep your rooster from getting frostbite on his comb. Best wishes and have fun!
     
  9. ReikiStar

    ReikiStar Chillin' With My Peeps

    Your two adult chickens will be fine. I would actually advise against a heat lamp. You're not going to stay well below freezing for weeks on end, so they won't need the help. Heat lamps weaken a chicken's natural ability and pose an obvious fire hazard. Two chickens in a well ventilated, draft-less, uninsulated coop will do just fine. If it's insulated, even better. We have two bachelor roosters in an outdoor coop with no problems. They don't even snuggle up to each other. Then we have 3 hens in an open faced coop in a cold greenhouse. Everyone does fine. They are 103+ degrees inside those feathers. As long as you have good ventilation and no humidity build up, you shouldn't have to worry about frost bite.

    And you're right, they are nothing like parrots. Although Quakers are mighty little buggers.

    Congrats on your new chickens!
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    What kind of a coop are they living in now? If they are used to the cold without any heat augmentation, they should be fine as long as they are dry and out of the wind.
    We need pics ;)
     

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