Minnesota New Member - Checking in!


6 Years
Apr 13, 2014
By A Lake, Minnesota
(1) Are you new to chickens / when did you first get chickens?

We are new to chickens. Researched for 4 years. City does not approve. Neighbors do. Picked up our new chicks on Thursday.

(2) How many chickens do you have right now?

We have four.

(3) What breeds do you have?

Silver Laced Wyandotte
Barred Rock
Buff Orpington

(4) How did you find out about BackYardChickens.com?
HAHAAAA! Anyone doing chicken research online is well aware of BYC!!!!!

(5) What are some of your other hobbies?
Writer, teacher, knitter, fishing, hiking, piano, dogs, cooking blah blah blah

(6) Tell us about your family, your other pets, your occupation, or anything else you'd like to share.

We have three kids 11, 13, 15. Two (bird) dogs - so I'm curious to find out how they will all get along...

I teach preschool and have taught 5th, 6th and Kindergarten.

LOVE this website. It has been so incredibly helpful.

We are all set and ready to build the coop. I still have a lot of questions about the chickens/coop during our cold spells (-20 - 0 for a week or more most winters and 98 with humidity in the summer). Water IN the coop? Water out of the coop? things like that. I think it will be a learn as we go, but I will be sure to share what I've learned.

Meet the flock: Top to bottom
Jessica Simpson - Buff Orpington
Dan - Silver Ameraucana
Sparkle - Barred Rock
Bismo Funyuns - Wyandotte


Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Mar 21, 2011
New Mexico, USA
My Coop
My Coop

Welcome to BYC!

Oh, your babies are just adorable! I hope the law doesn't catch up with you and you have to get rid of your birds. That would be awful! We do have a section here on Local Chicken Laws and How To Change Them should you need it....


As for cold temps and the coop...Chickens can survive brutally cold temps as long as they are dry and out of drafts. What I mean when I say dry is when chickens breath and poop all night, there is a lot of moisture there and it has to go somewhere. Because it is warm moisture, it has the tendancy to rise up toward the ceiling. If you have proper venting in your roof eaves, this moisture will get picked up in this air movement and go out the roof. If you have no venting or poor venting, this moisture is going refreeze and fall back down on your birds and make them cold and give them frost bitten combs. You want your roost bar low to the floor and them roosting in relatively quiet air, about 1 square foot of venting per bird in the ceiling or eaves and this moisture will be whisked away from your birds. They will stay dry, the heat bubble around them that they produce will keep them warm and they will stay dry. You can shut some of your venting it if is a windy night to slow the air down around them, but you never want to close the coop up completely. They will do best if the coop is about the same temp as the outside air so the birds are not chilled going outside every day. You want good air in your coop at all times to prevent respiratory ailments. I like to tack an old towel to the roost bar to keep the feet warm. Birds loose heat thru the feet. So warm feet mean warmer birds. You can use heat lamps during brutally cold nights, but not enough heat to do more than take the chill off as you don't want to ad any more moisture to the air. But always permanently attach them to the wall or ceiling to prevent fires should they fall. I like to use the heated dog water dishes to keep water from freezing. You don't need to run them at night as they won't be drinking at night. Always place these on bricks or cement blocks and not directly on bedding so you don't start a fire.

Here is the link to your state thread so you can chat with others in your state as to how they survive your brutal winters..


Your babies are just adorable!!! Enjoy this new adventure you are on and welcome to our flock!


6 Years
Apr 13, 2014
By A Lake, Minnesota
Thank you!!! Great advice. We've chosen The Garden Coop and I think will some tweaks here and there, it should be a good fit for our climate.

I have a good friend with a small flock and if the worst happens and my city decides to come after me, she will take the flock. We are rural with 3+ acres and were just recently rezoned non-agriculture after a county park went in. Grrrrrrrrr. All neighbors are onboard and have given me written consent. I'm hoping my city will tolerate a "don't ask-don't tell". In the meantime, I've read your link before regarding cities and how to work with them. I am going to document the whole experience so that if they come after me, I will be prepared to show them how it all works.

I think my dogs are more of a nuisance than chickens will be. Chickens don't go to the neighbors BBQ and run off with the bag of hamburger buns.



Free Ranging
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Feb 18, 2011
Last edited:

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