what temp is too cold for chickens?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cp5130, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. cp5130

    cp5130 New Egg

    Dec 17, 2008
    I live in Los Angeles and lately it has been in the low 40's at night. I have one chicken who lives in a rabbit coop at night. I have a travel dog kennel that I can put her in and bring her in the house if it is too cold. What temperature would be too cold for her?
  2. waynesgarden

    waynesgarden Feathers of Steel

    Mar 30, 2008
    Oxford County
    Chickens in the north are good for a lot colder than 40 degrees. My birds won't see 40 above for a long time.

    Of course they're fine below zero in a draft-free coop but I won't let them see your post so they won't get a notion that there is a place on the planet where it is a toasty 40 above this time of year.

    Molpet likes this.
  3. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    Welcome to BYC, cp5130 [​IMG].

    What Wayne said . . .

    I have had chickens in 10 below zero in an open barn. It was obvously stressful to them [​IMG]. But, they didn't die.

    I prefer to keep them above freezing but cannot right now. We have had temps above and below zero lately. Even tho' my chickens are in a fully insulated coop, it is freezing in there. They are fine - eating like Queens but that's good, they're getting lots of calories!

    I wouldn't worry about anything around freezing - I just wouldn't. They've got great insulation.

    Last edited: Dec 17, 2008
  4. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

    Mar 3, 2008
    ...except that ONE bird has a harder time staying warm than say, two... [​IMG] The temp that is too cold for your chicken is when she starts looking really uncomfortable... all fluffed up, not wanting to come out to eat, etc. If you have a nest box for her where she can snuggle deep into some shavings or straw, she should be fine at L.A. temperatures. Mine have been fine to -10F, but I have 25 birds in an 8x8 coop at night. They put off a lot of heat. Just keep an eye on her. You'll know. [​IMG]
  5. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

    May 6, 2007
    Columbia Gorge, OR
    Mine are in an unheated coop and it has been 5 degrees at night here. They are doing great and are still laying eggs!
  6. #1California Chick

    #1California Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 5, 2008
    SF Bay Area
    [​IMG] Happy to have you here on BYC. You will see that you get lots of help!!

    There are MANY posters that have chickens in MINUS degree temps. However, ALL of these have FLOCKS of chickens that keep each other warm.

    Put your hen in your pet carrier and bring her into your house, basement, garage or some other place where she would be warm at night. A rabbit hutch (I am assuming that it is wire on the floor and open) would be a pretty drafty place for a single hen. It would be hard for her to keep herself warm!!

    Taylorbrood likes this.
  7. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Low 40s is just fine for one bird. You NEED flock heat when it gets into the 30's. Draft free and she'll be fine outside. Unfortunately, my flock likes to sleep in the run on roosts so their "flock heat" goes right up into the 20F skies.
  8. mksenoj

    mksenoj Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 12, 2008
    UpState, New York
    Mine are in Camp Coop. Heat lamps on all day and night! They're fine below zero in a draft-free coop.
    Taylorbrood likes this.
  9. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps AutumnBreezeChickens.com

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    It's - 15 here right now and all my birds have is one heat lamp over their waterer and they do just fine all huddled together on the top rooster where it's warmest. They are on a 2x4 roost so their poor toes don't freeze though. No frozen combs yet either. This is my first winter so I hope they all make it through! I agree with the first comment you had. If it's gets real cold you would want to put them someplace draft free. 40 is fine though in my opinion. I only WISH it were 40 here! UGH! I am sick of winter already and it isn't even winter yet! Were getting 8 inches of snow tomorrow!
    Taylorbrood likes this.
  10. dturren

    dturren Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 16, 2008
    Hello...I live in northern California and have had an unusual cold spell with temps in the mid 20ies in the night. I have three Wyandotts who are all molting... can you believe that! I was concerned about the thin feathers so I bought some R19 insulation in a roll and completely sealed the coop with the stuff. I left one window open for fresh air and also put a thermometer in the coop to see what would happen to the temp. It is 50 degrees inside at 11pm, with 28 degrees outside the coop. The girls are sound asleep and seem quite content. I think I would bring your girl into the garage in a draft proof box if it were me. (Or maybe get more chickens!!!)[​IMG]
    Taylorbrood likes this.

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