Winter in the chicken house...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Hulagirlhi50, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. Hulagirlhi50

    Hulagirlhi50 New Egg

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    Oct 11, 2012
    Hi, I am new to raising chickens, this is my first winter, and I have a few quick questions. I have seven lovely, laying girls who are all very cold weather hearty. We have a permanent 10x10 insulated chicken house with a covered, fenced in chicken yard attached. I live here in the northwest and recently the temperatures have been dipping down into the upper 30's at night. In reading some of the forums, I have been adding more hay to the chicken house floor to keep them warm, in lieu of a heater. In the chicken house there is a connecting chicken door which has a hatch that opens and closes to let the chickens in and out. To date I have been keeping the door open all the time, but now it is getting colder and I am worried I am letting too much warm air out. So my question is, should I keep that hatch door closed at night and then open it every morning so as to keep it warmer inside during the night? When or should I ever, consider putting in a heater light for the girls? It gets very snowy and cold here and while their house is very well built and insulated, I just worry that they may be cold as the winter progresses. Any thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2012
  2. CluckyCharms

    CluckyCharms Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would definitely start shutting that access door at night, when it's time to turn in, and open it again in the morning. That will help a lot with keeping them warm.

    I don't think a heat source is necessary at all (and it's quite unnatural and foreign to them as well). If your coop is insulated (which you said it was) and dry...they will be fine. They will of course get 'chilly' but their solution to that is the natural one, which is snuggling up to each other for the warmth they need. I think they'll be happier with no heater. [​IMG]
     
  3. JackE

    JackE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is your pop door larger than the front of the coop below? If you have a secure run attached, and no predators can get in, you can probably leave it open. If you don't already know, you do not want to totally shut down all of your coop's ventilation. Fresh air is still very important, even when the weather is cold.
    Jack[​IMG]
     
  4. Hulagirlhi50

    Hulagirlhi50 New Egg

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    Oct 11, 2012
    Thanks Jack and nice coop!!
     
  5. Hulagirlhi50

    Hulagirlhi50 New Egg

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    Oct 11, 2012
    Thank you! I will begin closing the hatch each night. The girls seem happy and are laying very well, I guess it is just me being the "mother hen"!
     
  6. grammaC

    grammaC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Has anyone tried those heater bulbs? I'm in Minnesota where the winter can get nasty as well. I just ordered an infrared bulb that heats but doesn't give off light (since I don't want them to be awake all night.)

    I'll let you know once I use it how it works...just wondered if anyone else uses them.
     

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