Winter Chicken Care In The Mid-West


Oct 14, 2020
Near Goldendale Washington
Chickens should never have alcohol. I don't know if a few drops would do anything to hurt them, but I don't think it would do enough to keep the water thawed, either. There are a lot of threads on BYC about watering in the winter.

They do not need water at night, so I bring my waterer inside at sundown when I lock them in. I take out fresh, warm-ish water every morning, and check it a few times during the day. I can take out warm water if I need to.

I am seriously considering buying a heated waterer. I figure if I do, then the winter will be warmer. If I don't, it'll be cold and blustery just to spite me. (Not a fan of winter. Sigh.)
Oh, thank you!!! It was someone who meant well but doesn't keep chickens. I didn't know that about water not being needed at night. My instinct was that it wouldn't be good for them.

This time of year we hover just below freezing.. sometimes it dips down into the mid-low 20s at night. Today we had snow but it wasn't that bad. I've always worried about this but figured Leon knew best. I think I'll check the water a few times a day when it stays below freezing all day. I've thought about that but it hasn't done so, this year.
I know, I hate winter too ... and getting old and sore isn't any fun, either. I'd have to electrify the coop and I don't have that kind of cash right now. Thank you, again!

Sally PB

Premium Feather Member
Aug 7, 2020
Belding, MI
Here's another thing I do that might help you. I have a plastic peanut butter jar full of sand. I bring that in and put it by the wood stove over night. It's then at room+ temperature and acts as a heat sink in the milk jug waterer I use now. It could sit in one of those black rubber bowls too.

I chose plastic because I knew it would end up on its side with water inside. I wanted to be sure that if it froze, it wouldn't crack and break like glass could.

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