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Keeping silkies in the winter

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Jennifer74, Jul 16, 2016.

  1. Jennifer74

    Jennifer74 In the Brooder

    Jul 14, 2016
    I want to build an 8 by10 insulated coop. Is it possible to keep silkies in an outdoor coop in the winter. What can I use to heat it that isnt a fire hazard?

  2. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    If you build a solid, secure draft proof coop with sufficient ventilation, they should be fine. Rule of thumb is 4-5 sq. feet per bird inside the coop excluding roosts and nesting boxes, and 10 sq. feet per bird in the outside run. Silkies really don't fly, though they can jump high. They also have crests and beards that obscure their vision so they are much safer in an enclosed run with top. Otherwise they are sitting ducks for predators.

    You may want to check out the coops section for ideas, and the predator threads to learn how to safeguard coop/run. You could also check the "Silkie thread," to see how others get their birds thru hot & cold weather.
  3. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Hi and welcome to BYC - you have some great advice already so I'll just say hello!

    All the best
  4. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Crowing

    Apr 11, 2011
    My Silkies do great in the winter. I don't provide them with additional heat or anything special. They're actually my cold weather superstars, and are usually the only birds laying. However, right now, its about 90F outside and they're suffering. Everyone is laying around in the shade panting or running to the drinker. This is the time of year I do special things for them. Today they got a frozen watermelon. Yesterday they got a couple of cans of frozen corn (I freeze the corn in the water its packed in and drop it in a shallow bowl of water). I'm getting 0 eggs from them right now. In their defense, most of them are sitting on eggs or raising chicks, but still.

    They're actually pretty hardy little birds, keeping in mind that they're very susceptible to predators.
  5. Jennifer74

    Jennifer74 In the Brooder

    Jul 14, 2016
    thats good to know - Im getting really excited about this - my plan was to get everything ready now and have chickens in the spring but I dont know if I can wait lol

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