supplemental lighting and food/water?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chickenpicker32, Dec 20, 2012.

  1. chickenpicker32

    chickenpicker32 New Egg

    Dec 14, 2012
    I've just started giving my hens some supplemental lighting in their coop, which does not have food or water in it. The feeder and waterer are kept outside, under the coop. Since the ladies are now getting extra light in their confined coop, do I need to put some food or water in there? The are basically free backyard ranging birds, with their coop being in an old dog kennel. I usually leave the gate open to the kennel so they can roam as they please. Then at sundown they go in the coop, get roosted up and go to sleep. Now they get 3 hours of extra light in the evening during which they are totally active. Should I leave the coop door open so they can get out to get food and water? I'm afraid one of them won't be able to find her way back in, or a critter will get in there and wipe em' out. Or should I put a feeder and waterer in the coop? I tried putting the food and water in there at night when they first moved in, but they didn't eat or drink at night(obviously) and it made a soggy mess. There are 6 hens in a 4x4x4 coop.
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Your coop is small for 6 hens. It may work just for sleep and laying, but probably not so well as a place for them to walk around indoors, and eat and drink. I would either secure then pen from predators and leave the coop door open, or turn off the light, myself. With the light on, they shouldn't have any trouble finding their way in and out of the coop.

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