no electricity or water in coop area

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Zigapor, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. Zigapor

    Zigapor Out Of The Brooder

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    so I am new to this whole chicken thing, haven't yet gotten birds, or even converted the old shed into the coop, lol

    I do have a big concern though. The coop won't have electricity, and I have no way of getting it there. It won't have running water either (although that one doesn't worry me as much) The problem is we live where it gets crazy cold in winter and I am concerned my chickens will freeze. The coop will be made from an old shed that has a concrete wall and three wood walls. I plan on insulating it as well as possible, and raising the floor on skids to keep it warmer.

    How can I ensure my chickens are warm enough without having a way to heat them electrically. I had considered a small solar panel for powering a small heater, would that be sufficient?
    [​IMG]

    this will be my bird house :)

    also... it has two doors at the front, but no windows (yet). When I cut the windows out of the door, as well as their own little entrance, how would I go about making sure the cold doesn't come in through the windows and door?

    am I worrying too much about this cold situation? can chickens handle canadian winters? we do get a handful of days where it drops to -40C with the wind, although wind won't be a factor in the coop... but i assume it'll still get super cold in there at night without a heat source :/
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Chickens carry their own insulation with them. Provide a clean, dry, well ventilated yet draft free coop, adequate feed and water and they will be fine. A lot does depend upon the breed of chicken that you have. With Mediterranean breeds and large combed roosters of other breeds there is a possibility of their combs and wattles freezing.
     
  3. milo1108

    milo1108 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Look up the deep litter method. It basically is where you slowly fill up the bottom of the area where they will be pooing at with different litters like grass or sand or wood shavings. I've heard that it keeps them plenty warm in the winter time. Are you going to be having poop boards under the roosts? I've heard that it helps as well. I really think that they will be fine though, I'm sure being in Canada you will have birds that will be cold tolerate.
     
  4. mickey328

    mickey328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you make sure to get cold hardy birds and build the coop with good ventilation and insulation etc, you shouldn't have a problem. How many birds do you plan on having? They generate a lot more heat than you might think. Even in cold, ventilation is absolutely a must...ammonia and moisture can build up and cause serious illness in both birds and people. You want it up near the top so that the airflow is over the chickens' heads...it will clear out the bad air without creating a draft that will blow ON the birds.

    Insulating is a good idea...both to keep the heat in during winter and the heat out in the summer...heat is generally harder on chickens than cold is. You should definitely do a raised floor with insulation under it...that concrete will absorb the cold and throw it back; same with the concrete wall. You don't need to keep it "cozy"...just above freezing. Make sure you have a lot of bedding on the floor too.

    Where in Canada are you? I'm an ex-Winterpegger myself :) Keeping the water from freezing could be an issue. Sounds like you'll need to visit a couple times a day to make sure they have fresh, drinkable water. Perhaps you could rig up some sort of battery operated warmer that would keep it liquid.
     
  5. Zigapor

    Zigapor Out Of The Brooder

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    hey and thanks for the quick replies!

    I am in ontario, sort of half way between Toronto and Ottawa.

    I haven't gotten as far as figuring out the water freezing issue, lol, but I will start researching that too. I have heard of people adding heat lamps under their waterer though... does that work well?

    I do plan on having a poop board (actually going to try for a poop drawer, but idk how easy it will be to open from the outside with snow piled all over! I was also reading about a plastic poop slide that flows the poop into a designated easily accessable poop container, found it on a thread on this site, so cool!

    the roof that is already in place has gaps between it and the walls. With the hardware mesh in place, will those be enough for safety and ventilation?

    we have only planned on a few hens, maybe 4, and ducks (3 at most). Do ducks need the same requirements as chickens do for the winter months?
     
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Here are a few articles I think anyone building a coop and run should read. The lady that wrote them was in Ontario so she should have some credibility with you.

    Pat’s Big Ol' Ventilation Page
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-VENTILATION

    Pat’s Cold Coop (winter design) page:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-winter-coop-temperatures

    Pat’s Big Ol' Mud Page (fixing muddy runs):
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-fix-a-muddy-run
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. mickey328

    mickey328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Awesome links, Ridgerunner!

    I don't know a think about ducks, Zigapor, so will leave that to more experienced folk than me :) What size is your coop? Just as with people houses, larger spaces are harder to heat.

    Most of the heated water thingies require some electricity, so unless there is maybe something that will run off a battery or maybe a solar panel, it might be a bit tricky.

    LOL, I grew up in Red Lake, ON...your area is what we all referred to as "down east" [​IMG]
     
  8. Zigapor

    Zigapor Out Of The Brooder

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    the coop will be 7 by 11 (feet)

    thanks for the links!
     
  9. mickey328

    mickey328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow, you won't have to worry about chicken math getting you then! You'll have room for LOTS more! LOL
     
  10. Zigapor

    Zigapor Out Of The Brooder

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    lol, that's what I was hoping to hear!

    I really love the idea of adding a mini well insulated coop within the larger coop so the chickens can chose to go there for added warmth (i think that comes from one opf the links above, but i've been reading so much stuff that I can't remember what info comes from where, lol)
     

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