Storing feed in a shed in winter

legojenn

Songster
Feb 10, 2018
112
256
136
western Quebec
This is going to be my first winter with the hens and I have what might be a dumb question about food storage?

Our winters get down to high-20s/low-30s Celsius at the extreme,which I think is the low -20s Fahrenheit. Can I leave the food in an unheated shed? Is there enough moisture in there that would cause it to freeze together? Would its freezing destroy any nutritional value?
 

ashlierami

Songster
Feb 9, 2017
871
1,538
232
Alabama
This is going to be my first winter with the hens and I have what might be a dumb question about food storage?

Our winters get down to high-20s/low-30s Celsius at the extreme,which I think is the low -20s Fahrenheit. Can I leave the food in an unheated shed? Is there enough moisture in there that would cause it to freeze together? Would its freezing destroy any nutritional value?
What type of feed exactly? I have stored bird seed, all flock, and layer feed in winter with no issues. As far as nutritional value goes I am unsure but think heat would destroy it faster than cold. I have thick plastic buckets that I line with a garbage bag, pour the feed and put on the air tight lid . Never had an issue as far as spoilage or rodents goes
 

legojenn

Songster
Feb 10, 2018
112
256
136
western Quebec
What type of feed exactly? I have stored bird seed, all flock, and layer feed in winter with no issues. As far as nutritional value goes I am unsure but think heat would destroy it faster than cold. I have thick plastic buckets that I line with a garbage bag, pour the feed and put on the air tight lid . Never had an issue as far as spoilage or rodents goes
It would be layer pellets if I'm willing to drive an 90 minutes, crumble if I go to my local feed store. It would be worth my while to grab three bags of the Shur-Gain to last all winter rather than whatever crumble the Co-op sells. There also seems to be less waste with the pellets.
 

lcwmt

Songster
Jun 16, 2017
387
874
214
N Central MT
I'm a little South and very West of you.
It gets very cold here in Winter and there are often Chinook winds that can/will cause a 50 degree swing in 12 hours or so. <G>

Currently, my feed is stored in the mud room (about 60 degrees F, and in airtight containers). The plan is to put it out in the (yet-to-be-built-) garden shed. When I do that, feed will be stored in its original bag (to absorb any moisture, HAH), and in galvanized cans, to keep rodents out. We have mice and voles. They get hungry and the cats can't keep up.

I think your area is more humid than mine but just as cold.
Agree with a previous poster who speculated nutrients are more easily lost in heat than cold. Think of how we deal with food storage for our two-legged families.

Were I you, I'd leave the feed in its original bag (opened) and store it in a rodent proof container out where it is convenient for you. Don't worry. All will be well.
IMO, for storage considerations, it does not matter if you are feeding pellets or crumbles but I agree, less waste with pellets.
 

ashlierami

Songster
Feb 9, 2017
871
1,538
232
Alabama
It would be layer pellets if I'm willing to drive an 90 minutes, crumble if I go to my local feed store. It would be worth my while to grab three bags of the Shur-Gain to last all winter rather than whatever crumble the Co-op sells. There also seems to be less waste with the pellets.
Your a lucky chicken keeper if your girls eat pellets. I wasted a 50lb back once bc they refused it . I mix my crumble with bags of bird seed that's full of sunflower seeds and I pour kicking chicken on top. Keeps them in great shape
 

Alaskan

The Frosted Flake
Premium Feather Member
Jul 26, 2008
31,737
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Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
My Coop
This is going to be my first winter with the hens and I have what might be a dumb question about food storage?

Our winters get down to high-20s/low-30s Celsius at the extreme,which I think is the low -20s Fahrenheit. Can I leave the food in an unheated shed? Is there enough moisture in there that would cause it to freeze together? Would its freezing destroy any nutritional value?
If the feed freezes together in a clump then you bought bad feed...or it got wet...

As already said, as long as it is stored so the rodent hoards can't get to it, and water can't get to it.... put it in an air tight trashcan, and it will be fresh for months.

If you are storing because the feed store is far away...remember that:
1. They eat WAY more when it is cold
2. At crazy cold temps higher protein feed is better...so 18 or 21% protein.
 

RoosterML

Make Ameraucanas Great Again
Premium Feather Member
Nov 5, 2018
3,847
26,294
632
Tolland County Connecticut, USA
My feed stays in the barn all the time in metal garbage cans not plastic. One thing to remember about your storage container. If your container may have direct sunlight (especially in summer) do not use plastic containers. The metal container will reflect the sun=heat away from the inside feed. With plastic containers the heat will transfer into the container and feed causing it to spoil much faster.
 

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