Shut the coop door in winter?


5 Years
May 16, 2014
We live in MN. Five birds who free range in a large garden with a six foot fence. Their coop has a small doorway that leads to an 8' by 6' run that we close for safety at night. In winter, it can get way below zero here. Should we keep them in the coop all the time and close that little door or can they use their run during the day? The coop is 4' by 6'.
Hello & welcome!
I live in upstate NY and our temps. were somewhere around -17F at times. My girls have the luxury of a coop within a barn, so they are quite protected. They do like to get out and about, scratching around etc. although they won't walk on the snow unless I put down some straw for them (spoiled
) I think the bottom line is if they are sheltered from wind/rain/snow and out of the worst of the weather, they should be ok. I'm sure others here will guide you, especially the folks from MN!
My chickens love to go outside in the winter. I cover the run walls with clear vinyl shower curtains, and this blocks all wind, and keeps the run about 20 degrees warmer on a sunny winter day. My experience is it is wind that causes the most issues. Before I wrapped the run, the chickens did not go out on many days. But once I wrapped it, they are outside all day, everyday.


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