Trying to decide what light (not heat) in the new coop for laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kuntrychick, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When the new coop gets finished (hopefully this weekend weather permitting), I wanna add some light on a timer to possibly help the girls lay more. I know this has been covered numerous times, but here goes again...

    The coop windows will be where our back porch lights can shine in there (if I left them on all night or put them on a timer to come on early in the morning). Also, we have a security light that hubby can cut a window on that side of coop to let that shine in if needed.

    Would either or both of those be enough to help with laying? Would the security light on all night be too much on them as to encourage pecking each other or something or bother their sleeping in any way? It is not close to them & is not the bright white kind...it's the more yellowish glow more dim kind of security light. If this would not help or hurt at all, it can be blocked by not putting a window on that side of the coop at all.

    If I need a total different lighting set-up, what is the general consensus? A low wattage bulb (like 25 watt) hanging somewhere in their coop but not directly on them? Or the CFL energy efficient bulb? A regular light socket, one of the mechanic light things hanging, or one of the reflector brooder type lamps angled to face an opposite wall in the coop not facing directly on the chickens?

    I had read about Christmas lights on a timer. Would they not peck the wiring and/or bulbs of Christmas lights? Would the rope lights inside the coop put up all along the top edges of the inside of coop be a better option?

    Also, pretty soon here, it will be starting to get dark around 4:30 or 4:45pm or so. Trying to decide what time to put it on when it comes to that. Even if on a timer, coming on at 4:30 am, when it starts getting dark at 4:30 pm or so, that's still only 12 hours. So, would I need the timer set for whatever lighting set-up I decide on to come on like at 2:30 am or so?! That won't bother me, because I don't get woke up by the roosters (even though their yard is right outside our bedroom window), but hubby & neighbors might not like roosters crowing @ 2:30 in the morning.

    Thanks! Sorry so long. [​IMG]
     
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    You want to simulate daylight. You don't want light on the all night. If you are going to add light, it's best to add it early in the morning to equal a 14 hour "daytime". So it there's currently 11 hours of daylight, then have the light come on at 4AM til 7AM when it gets light. This will keep the chickens in their normal sleep pattern, and not confuse them when it's time to roost for the night.

    All you need is a coop that gives enough light for the chickens to wake up and get moving around.
     
  3. branston

    branston Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've been thinking of light in the coop also as dark is getting earlier and earlier. Do the hens actually stop laying completely in the winter months?
    I also have neigbors, so if I put a light timer to come on at 4am, the roosters will start crowing, right?
    Then, I'm thinking what type of light? Will a regular light encourage them to peck at each other while locked up in the coop? Will a red light work better?
     
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Quote:Depends on the individual hen and the breed as to whether they will quit laying completely or not. Some breeds are just better about laying in the wintertime than others. If you add a timer, yes your rooster will most likely start crowing after the light comes on.
    If you chose to add light, it doesn't need to be a strong light. Just enough to be able to read a newspaper without straining to see it. Red lights don't work for keeping production up.
    Really, pullets coming into their first year of laying typical lay well in winter whether you add a light or not. If you are going to see a slow down it usually occurs during their second winter.
     
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    The ONLY pullets I've had that have not laid through winter were my Marans. They were 9 months though and might have gone through a mini molt. Older birds typically are molting during winter, but pullets keep laying. Not at full production, but enough to keep me in eggs.
     
  6. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 2 RIR (not sure if RIR or production red or what) that started laying maybe around August 2009...so they're getting old. I also have a BO not sure how old she is but pretty sure she's older than the RIRs. I have a mutt....not sure what kind that is old & evidently has reproductive issues. I also have 3 young pullets that could start laying within a month or so.
     

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