Winter in NE GA with Chickens

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by hangin'witthepeeps, Oct 21, 2009.

  1. hangin'witthepeeps

    hangin'witthepeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 1, 2009
    Colbert, GA
    I was pondering the water question. I know we have overnight freezing temps and I used to chop ice in the water troughs for the horses for a few months. Now I have heated trough. So knowing that the water trough freezes, should I suspect my chicken waters to freeze? What if they are in the coop with the chickens? The trough is out in the open pasture. Should I put electric in the coop or would that just be a waste of my time and money? I have the wire but need all the other stuff. Plus digging the trench which is a pain in my back as we dug the one for the horse barn. Would building a box and putting insulation in the box and then a top with a hole cut so the chickens could drink out of it work?
     
  2. Atlchick

    Atlchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 5, 2009
    Grayson, GA
    I live just 30 minutes from you (other side of Loganville) and we made it through our first winter with chickens last year - with no chicken losses! Our chickens don't stay inside in the winter, just outside in a tin-covered coop. We do staple thick poly around to block the wind, and everyone seemed fine throughout the winter - they just snuggled closer at night! There were probably less than 10 days all winter when I had to break open any ice in their waterers in the morning. Of course, we didn't have any long-term low temp freezes, otherwise we would probably put up a heating lamp for them.
     
  3. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I live up in Fannin County at 2000 ft elevation, north of Blue Ridge, meaning that nights up here are colder than where you are.

    For a water defroster, you can use an extension cord on a work light, one with the guard that is solid on the back and "cage-like" on the front and holds a regular light bulb. Take a 3 gallon bucket (5 gallons are too tall), turn it upside down, cut a 2" hole in the side a couple inches down from the top. Run the plug up through the inside of the bucket and out the hole and keep going till the base of the work light is secured/crammed into the hole and the light sort of hangs down a bit away from the sides and top and bottom, making sure there is no bedding inside the bucket to catch fire. Sit the bucket back down, upside down, put the waterer on top of the bucket. You may have to use the Krylon spray paint made for plastic to darken the body of the bucket or it's a huge glowing light all night long, LOL. We use a 40 watt bulb which puts off enough heat to keep the water from freezing. Sorry, I dont have a picture of it. We have one in the little Firetower coop with a gallon waterer sitting on it. The water stayed slightly warm to the touch, though temps went into the mid 20's a couple of nights.
    You can often get the shorter buckets from a bakery that used to hold donut glaze or garlic bread spread, whatever. They're free for the asking most of the time.
     

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