Put them in Coop on hot night?


8 Years
May 21, 2011
SF East Bay, CA
Hi! Newbie here! I am a little confused. I see these beautiful big wooden coops to put the chickens into at night for safety and sleep. But they look like they would be too hot in the summer but they would not be secure unless closed up, am I correct or am I missing something??
I live in Northern Calif. East of SF. We get hot summers, but not as hot as mid west or north states where I see the coops are solid wood. It looks like overheating would happen on those hot nights. Is there a temperature when you should NOT put them into the coop but let them stay in run? and what if I don't have run? just a coop and free range back yard?
thank you for any ideas. sorry if this is some place else. I did not see it.
The way I build our coop was that the eves at the rafters are open for venting, and we have two vent doors and a windows that can all be open. The vent doors and eves that are open to the outside are covered with hardware cloth. In the winter for rain, everything is either covered, or close-able when needed, but otherwise, these stay open for venteliation.
Many people (other than those in the deep south or desert areas) build only thinking of winter. So you're right, you find many coops that aren't ventilated enough to handle hot summers. I'm guilty of it myself with my main coop. So I do use a fan in my coop when it's up in the 90s, because I don't want to leave my birds out in the run. Areas that get hot summers AND cold winters do better to build in LOTS of ventilation/windows that can be selectively closed as needed come winter time.
If your coop is designed effectively, it will be no hotter than outdoors, thus there will be no benefit to them being outdoors.

If you discover the hard way one night that your coop HAS some design problems i.e. insufficient ventilation for your climate, then I guess for most chcikens 92-95 F or so would be the point at which I would personally expect to prefer them to take their chances outdoors (altho it depends on the individual chickens, some breeds are considerably more tolerant of heat than others, IMO you hsould go by how your actual flock is doing, not by a thermometer). Another option to consider is to run a fan (regular or misting) as long as you can rig it up safely.

And then in the morning I would be out there with my Sawzall (or whatever) opening up quite a lot more ventilation so it was never ever too hot in there again.

JMHO, good luck, have fun,

Not sure if this is what to do, but it is working safely. Here in S.E. Bama, we get real hot in the summer months. I leave all my coop windows open,(and well protected from intruders), and leave the pop door open for them to have the option of coming out to stay cool. I also have a roost in the run if they choose to roost outside in the cool. My run is half covered as you can see in the pic. So far this year they still opt for being in the coop at nite.
Yep, where it gets really hot, I think a coop probably should have at least 2 open sides (south and east - to catch prevailing summer breezes), though mine only has one. But it does have large windows on either side and a small door in the back that's up at about the 5' mark (was used for a horse stall - the door was to dump feed into the trough - which is now a nestbox lol) that I have covered with hardware cloth and open for ventilation. I like the idea of letting them choose whether to sleep in there or not. My run isn't predator proof (it's covered, but only with chicken wire) so I don't have that option.
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My DH is a brilliant man and came up with a removable panel for the north side of the coop, which is under the roof. It is insulated for winter, with a vent slot and in summer it is just hardware cloth and mosquito screening and is opposite the south side window, which can be opened. Works great during the humid MN nights. Here you can see it with the panel removed.
Thank you all so much for the helpful info. We are converting a 8x8 greenhouse into a cool coop ( I hope!) We have the SF fog roll in at night and we don't always get the fog itself, but ususally the breeze unless it is a short lived heat wave. So I think we will cut a window into the west side where the wind blows into. The other side/ east will have the secure screen door for cross breeze. Then there is the fiberglass slider for winter also.
We will try the 2 layers of plastic and sand to start. The green house shelves will have 2 nest boxes and then the roost will be parallel with the windows, or maybe not. This is so fun. tx!

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