Newbie from Kentucky!


7 Years
Nov 5, 2012
I have never raised any animals aside from dogs and cats, until now! Fell in love with chickens and decided to take the poultry plunge!
On Sep 25, i received 5 Barred Plymouth Rocks and 2 White PR's. They are now hopping ready to be outside in their coop area. Being the newbie that i am, i purchased 2 "chicken hutches" from TS, put them together, built a nice large fenced area around them, with heavy netting over the top, chicken wire and steel farm fence on the sides ect. After painting them ever so cute, with "Mary engelbreit" style flowers and chickie tracks, i realized that no one on here recommended the hutches. They are too small, and have no insulation. Now that im pretty much stuck with them, i had to make do. I added an extra layer of plywood, with insulation covered in plastic sheeting in between, and have tried to make them as cozy as possible. Because they are so small, i don't see anyway for them to have a heat lamp in them at all. I planned for 3 chickens to sleep in one and 4 in the other. There is a roosting bar and nesting boxes in each, with lots of straw and pine shavings for bedding. I've gone into such great detail, to ask the question:
Is it okay to put them in non heated coops (our weather right now dips down into the low 30's at night) considering how close they will be to each other for body heat? If not, what should i do?
Any suggestions for heat would be greatly appreciated! :)


Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Dec 22, 2009
I keep my ducks in non heated coops in the winter and they have always been fine.


8 Years
Jul 17, 2011
North Central Kansas
Greetings from Kansas and
! Great to have you aboard. I think there are lots of opinions on heating the coop or not. I think it being draft free on the inside is probably more important than heated. The hutches you describe are pretty small and chickens put off a lot of heat so I don't know if you need to heat them - just my opinion. Wouldn't want you to go out some frigid morning and find chick-sicles! Also, unsure how cold your winters get. Lots of others will likely chime in with advice. Best of luck to you!


Up Northerner
11 Years
Mar 26, 2011
Upper Peninsula Michigan
Hi and welcome to BYC from northern Michigan :D

I never heat my coops. Draft-free ventilation is very important, if moisture condenses on the inside of your coop it is too tightly sealed. Roosts should be made of 2x4's with the 4"side flat to allow them to pull their feet up under their feathers and keep them warm.


8 Years
Mar 1, 2011
Hello from Ohio! We get very cold winters here - its 30 degrees now. We use a thick layer of pine shavings and put straw on top of it as floor bedding during the winter months. Our Seramas are given a heat lamp because they aren't as hardy as the larger breeds of chickens.

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