Tips, trixks amd suggestions for getting ready and through northern winters.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by up101, Oct 9, 2013.

  1. up101

    up101 New Egg

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    Mar 13, 2013
    Moran, Michigan
    I'm new to the chicken world. I have a small mixed flock of 13 that is soon to be decreased to 8. Looking for tips and tricks and suggestions for getting through the winter in the U.P. of Michigan.
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
  3. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    One needs to vary the feed with the temperature, when it is really cold, they need more feed, when it is warmer, they need less feed. When it is really cold, say -20F, then I will give mine either cornbread, or corn meal added to their regular feed. If is is very cold, I also try and feed them again just before dark, as going to bed with a full crop, gives them energy to produce heat.

    As for the coup, it needs to be a wind break, and not drafty, but not air tight. If is it too tight, moisture will build up, and your birds will get frostbite. You need ventilation.

    A flock together produces heat, and the more birds you have together, the more heat they produce. You want your coup big enough for the number of birds that you have without over crowding but not so big that it all the heat is lost. Error on the side of too big, vs too small. Not enough room causes lots of problems.

    I live in western SD, I don't add light or heat or heated water. My set up is too far away from electricity, and my girls get along just fine. Running extension cords can be a fire hazard, and many people have lost a coup to a fire.

    I take out warm water every morning, using a black rubber bowl. I can stomp out the frozen water, and give them fresh. Every one gets a drink. The need for water is not near what it is in the summer, where they can go through a great deal of water in hot temperatures.

    hope this helps, but the big two are enough feed and protection from the elements, but not air tight.

    Mrs K
     

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