Snap Lock Large

KDM1966

In the Brooder
Premium member
Jun 28, 2019
15
9
19
Sugar Grove Ohio
To start off, I am new to having chickens. Before getting our 9 hens, (3 BR, 2BO, 2 EE, 1 RIR, 1 LH) we did a lot of research on runs, coops, taking care of our girls and so on. We brought them home in June and have been in ❤ with them every since. For us, they are pets and we do our best to provide everything they could want and need. So this is my issue...we bought a large snap lock coop and have it secured and attached to a 8x16 run that their coop door goes into. Today I noticed frost inside the coop and panicked. Girls are fine, healthy and not frost bite. The coop is cleaned every morning, theres no wet bedding but I had the vents 1/2 closed because Im afraid they will get a draft from being on the top of the roosting area. We are replacing the coop in the spring so I have to make due with this for this winter and we live in Ohio where it rains a lot but winters can be brutal. Can anyone give me some suggestions on what to do to keep them safe/healthy from moisture and frost bite until the new coop is built this coming spring. My husband says to keep the vent all open not matter what the temp is...I am a city girl (now live in country) and have never had an outside pet and worry about the bitter cold. Last night the temps got into the single digits but the weather for the last week has been rain and the ground is still saturate with water. Any suggestions helping me get through this winter would be greatly appreciated.
 
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rosemarythyme

Free Ranging
Jul 3, 2016
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You want to keep as much ventilation open as possible however I'm not sure where the ventilation is in relation to the roosts, and how the wind/breezes interact with those vents. So that's something you need to look at. If push comes to shove you can see if there's a way to add a buffer by angling a piece of cardboard (all else failing) or plywood to ward off direct wind blasts into the roost area.

I have 95% of my ventilation facing away from my prevailing wind direction (and anything facing that direction is louvered), so even in a windstorm everything can stay open, but that takes preplanning that isn't going to be available in a premade coop.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
Nov 27, 2012
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Please post pics of your coop and run, inside and out.
Some dimensions would help too.
Can't think of a snaplock that will fit 9 birds.
 

KDM1966

In the Brooder
Premium member
Jun 28, 2019
15
9
19
Sugar Grove Ohio
Thanks for your comments all, I will post some pics of our coop and run tomorrow when it gets light. The problem with the Snap Lock information (all different depending on what website you are on) is they say anywhere from 8 to 15 birds. The coop does not have a lot of space in it but theres 3 roost and really they only use 2 of them. They are only in it to sleep and to lay eggs. We thought we did our due diligence on the coop not wanting to invest a ton until we knew it was something wanted to do long term. But we were wrong and the coop really is not what I would call cheap to buy. With what we spent on it we could have had someone make us a larger one that fits them better.
Thats why we are having a new coop built this spring. Thanks again, any suggestions are greatly appreciated to get us thru this winter.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
Nov 27, 2012
71,133
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SW Michigan
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The problem with the Snap Lock information (all different depending on what website you are on) is they say anywhere from 8 to 15 birds.
True of all the prefabs/kits.
Usually about half the minimum they show is more accurate.
Looking forward to seeing your coop and run.
 

rosemarythyme

Free Ranging
Jul 3, 2016
5,925
10,942
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Pac NW
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Thanks for your comments all, I will post some pics of our coop and run tomorrow when it gets light. The problem with the Snap Lock information (all different depending on what website you are on) is they say anywhere from 8 to 15 birds. The coop does not have a lot of space in it but theres 3 roost and really they only use 2 of them. They are only in it to sleep and to lay eggs. We thought we did our due diligence on the coop not wanting to invest a ton until we knew it was something wanted to do long term. But we were wrong and the coop really is not what I would call cheap to buy. With what we spent on it we could have had someone make us a larger one that fits them better.
Thats why we are having a new coop built this spring. Thanks again, any suggestions are greatly appreciated to get us thru this winter.
Sucks having made an initial investment but at least you're aware of the limitations of your set up and your birds will definitely appreciate a new coop in the spring. I did the same, making smaller investment initially with just a few birds and a prefab, then upgrading later on once I decided I wanted to keep going.

At least your current coop can still serve as an isolation cage in case you need it, or possibly an outdoor brooder if you ever want to try that.
 

Folly's place

Crossing the Road
Sep 13, 2011
17,100
21,907
906
southern Michigan
Welcome!
Please do post photos and coop dimensions, so we can comment and maybe help. This could be a very difficult winter for them if it's just too small and underventilated!
Mary
 

123RedBeard

Crowing
Oct 20, 2014
1,423
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Arizona
While waiting for pictures and measurements ...

Chickens poop ALOT at night ... chicken poop has ALOT of moisture in it ...

Also chickens breathing put out quite a bit of moisture too ...

While they only sleep in it may apply ... they are cooped up in there for more than a third of the whole 24 hour "day" ... if they don't have the cubic feet of air space, they need a fresh continues supply air, this also removes the amonia that is given off from their poop, which is harmful for them.
 

KDM1966

In the Brooder
Premium member
Jun 28, 2019
15
9
19
Sugar Grove Ohio
Pics as promised also the specs on coop is
  • COOP: 64” X 39” X 42”
I love the idea of keeping the coop for isolation purposes, we were planning on doing that. I thought of putting a mylar type of blanket (keeping it away from vents) and putting on roof to keep more of the warm air inside the coop or a weather proof emergency type of blanket, only used at night.
 

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