Winter cold

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Nick-A-New, Nov 15, 2014.

  1. Nick-A-New

    Nick-A-New Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2014
    I live in the okanogan in BC Canada and we get about 3 feet or so of snow. Do you need to put heat lamps in my chicken coop. It's not 100% sealed off. But I was told not to because you don't want your chickens to sweat in the winter. What would you suggest??
     
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    If your coop is well ventilated, without any draughts on the hens, dry inside and weather proof you flock should be o.k. without additional heat. My biggest worry with heat lamps is first of all the fire risk and secondly, the plunge in temperature if the power goes out, or the lamp fails. That could actually do them more harm than the cold. Most breeds are well equipped for cold weather, with their feather coats and the only thing you need to watch out for is frostbite on their feet and combs.

    Here are some tips from our members on keeping chickens over winter:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/winter-chicken-keeping
     
  3. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Chickens don't sweat...

    In general if the coop is properly ventilated (coop humidity bellow 60% or better bellow 40%) and you have cold tolerant chickens you don't need heat... You have to weigh all the risk and benefits in your particular circumstance and setup...

    As said above heat lamps are a fire hazard there are better and safer ways to heat your coop using radiant heaters pads like 'pig blankets for example... If you do heat your coop do it with a lot of though and SAFE, not chained together cheap extension cords draped across the yard or exposed unprotected heat lamps that can break or burn the birds...

    I fully beg to differ on the risk of what if the power goes out they will be plunged into cold, I don't live my life worrying about rare or never going to happen what if's because what if that what if never happens? If the power goes out at my house I have a backup generator, so worse case my heated coop isn't' heated for a short time,just like my house when the power goes out... And I look at it this way, 2 weeks ago the temps were in the 50°s and 60°s in my area overnight they dropped to, the 20°s and 30°s to me a temporary power outage and the associated temp drop is really no different... Of course this revolves around how hot you heat your coop, heating a coop to 75° is entirely different then keeping a coop heated just above freezing... I agree a bird that is in a toast 75° coop probably isn't going to be all that happy if the heat source is removed and it plunges to 20°, but if the coop was only heated to 35° and it drop to 20° I personally don't believe it's a big deal...

    I personally heat my coop to 35° to 40° (right not holding 37°) all winter for many of my own 'beneficial' reasons the biggest three reasons being I have less cold tolerant peafowl in my coop and second I don't want the hassle of dealing with frozen water, especially since my coop is plumbed with running water and third I have ZERO risk of frostbite...

    As a general rule for chickens heat is not needed as long as the humidity is low, but that is not the hard fast rule many would claim it to be...
     
  4. Nick-A-New

    Nick-A-New Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2014
    Ok thank you i have never put heat in their coop there all winter tolerable chickens this is their first winter. Here it gets to about below 20 to 30. But right now it's only sitting around -7. But all winter hardy chickens. One more thing do you let then out in the yard in the winter?
     
  5. annabelle12

    annabelle12 Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes, let them out. They will go in if they get cold.
     
  6. Nick-A-New

    Nick-A-New Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2014
    Thank you
     

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