Should I do something to help my chickens stay cool?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by prairiepearls, Jun 20, 2010.

  1. prairiepearls

    prairiepearls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We're having a terribly humid, hot June here in Kansas -- mid-90s & 60% humidity, for a heat index of over 100° the last few days. My 3 chickens, who are almost 3 months old, free-range around our back yard all day. There's lots of shade, and always water available, but they end up panting and panting. Is this OK? Is there anything else I can do to keep them cooler? My husband says they're doing what's natural and panting to keep cool, but I want to make sure I'm treating them humanely. Our summers frequently get over 100° in July and August, occasionally over 110°. My head tells me our grandparents kept chickens in Kansas summers and they were fine, but my heart is worried. [​IMG]
     
  2. noodleroo

    noodleroo Snuggles with Chickens

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    I know that chickens have survived in hot weather in every area of the country. But our ancestors had to hatch their own or buy local chickens; they didn't have the resources for obtaining all different kinds of chickens that we have today. Some of the breeds don't do as well in the heat.

    I would provide something to help your chickens cool off. Some of us freeze 2 liter soda bottles of water and provide them for our chickens. Frozen watermelon and grapes make a good treat to cool off with too. Its rediculously hot in south Texas for this time of year too. I can't imagine what August is going to be like....
     
  3. Cynthia12

    Cynthia12 Always Grateful Premium Member

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    Quote:I know I worried when I first saw mine panting. I seriously thought something was wrong. They do pant..like a dog..keep the water coming...they should be fine.
     
  4. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Yes, please do something to help your chickens stay cool. I live in south Louisiana where it is HOT already. The heat index gets up to 105 degrees. I have plenty of shade for them to go under to get out of the heat. I also freeze plastic bottles and put them in the gallon waterers so that they water stays cool all day. It's too hot for me to stay outside too long, so I know the chickens are hot.
     
  5. WriterofWords

    WriterofWords Has Fainting Chickens

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    When I see mine panting and holding their wings out to the side I turn on a sprinkler and cool down an area for them.
     
  6. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    I put a ton of ice cubes in their water. They do free range and find good spots, at one time I had a mist system 30 bucks in walmart. And I have a fan in the coop for the girls that are laying. The heat is tough
     
  7. Cynthia12

    Cynthia12 Always Grateful Premium Member

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    Quote:That's a good thought..I like that, think I will try an area I have in mind right now. I have chips in the coop area..but after reading about the sand, I'm thinking about going to sand. That may help with the coolness if watered down too.
     
  8. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I put up shade tarps and cover the roof of my coop with reflective foil insulation so that it will be cool enough in there by sundown for chickens to use it. I run a mister in the afternoons, and I put out shallow pans of water (plastic plant saucers work great) for my chickens to stand in. I have heat tolerant bantams, too!

    Every summer you read about chickens dying from the heat, so I think you're right to be concerned about it.
     
  9. prairiepearls

    prairiepearls Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I tried putting a mister in one shady area the other day, and they avoided it like the plague. I'll try some ice cubes in their water dish, and some shallow water bowls & see if they'll wade in them. Chickens don't take bird baths, I guess?
     
  10. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    I saw these little "huts" at our local zoo. They use the huts to place water under so that the water doesnt get hot. I am in the process of having someone build some of these for me, so that I can put my chickens water under this hut so I won't have to worry about continually placing frozen plastic bottles in their water containers. I have other 100 chickens and it's time consuming and a lot of work to do this every day.


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