Winter is Coming! Checklists, tips, advice for a newbie

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by LadyCluck77, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. minmin1258

    minmin1258 Chillin' With My Peeps

    So Bogtown Chick, what you are saying is my roosts are too high? Even though they have room to "fly" to the ground and have thick bedding for a soft landing? [​IMG]
  2. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    I have several different height perches.

    My highest is about five feet up. The landing is sand on dirt, not all that soft. They could, if they wanted to, come down in one two foot hop, and then a three foot hop.

    I haven't had a problem, but I know that some people do. I am not sure how common broken toes etc. are due to high perches.

    My fattest/ heaviest are a Brahma, some Cochins, and my Marans Rooster. Actually, that Marans rooster never goes to the higher perches. He stays all by himself on a low, maybe two foot up perch.

    I used to have problems with frostbite on toes, but only my first winter when I had two inch perches. Those perches were all lower, I think the highest was three feet.

    I haven't had any frostbite on toes since I switched to 4 inch perches.
  3. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    Kari likes this.
  4. minmin1258

    minmin1258 Chillin' With My Peeps

    So Alaskan from what u r saying I goofed again! I need to widen the perching area of the pallets. As it is the boards they perch on are not wide enough for them to be able to cover their toes up. Hmmm back to the drawing board! Lol
  5. wantedman66

    wantedman66 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2011
    You can use 2-3,s they work excellent and allow there bodies to cover there feet,also can't believe that vasaline didn't work for frostbite that's what I use and never had problems,luckily we haven't had very cold or snow yet here in CT.
  6. wantedman66

    wantedman66 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2011
    Hey don't be so hard on yourself just checked out your coop page "AWESOME"job i am jealous of your set up,I have a 10-13' coop but wish I had your space but not your snow,you can keep that.But I do like your set up,I have 35 chickens with 2 coops but if I had the room I would have alot more.
  7. JesNflock

    JesNflock Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 11, 2013
    NE Florida,US
    Love your set up! Always a learning process right?! How can I make this better, can I make room over here....etc
    Lol I can say I'm jealous of you both...I don't have anywhere near that much room OR that many chickens(35 WOW!) I wish I did though...I love 'em (I'm up to 13...for now [​IMG])
  8. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    I don't know about a 2x3 being wide enough.

    The one winter I had the 2x2s as perches and got frostbite on the toes, well, THAT was terrible! A couple just got it on the ends of the toes, so they only lost the last digit. But, the ones where frost bite was closer to the leg, it was deep and nasty and wanted to get nasty infected, since keeping a chicken foot clean is very difficult. So, I ended up having to cull all of the chickens with bad frostbite on the feet.

    My climate is very humid and cold, so large single combs and wattles always get at least a little frostbite, even with excellent ventilation.

    The point is that it is very easy for my chickens to get frostbite, and even though frostbite on the combs and wattles isn't a large problem, frostbite on the toes is a large problem. So I wouldn't want to risk a 2x3.

    Of course, it also depends on the size of your chickens! :D But I want their feet totally flat, since I worry that bent toes will restrict blood flow and increase the risk of frostbite even if the toes are completely covered with belly feathers.

    You could always just take one chicken with the largest feet, and see how much space that foot needs to stay flat.
  9. EggShelli

    EggShelli New Egg

    Dec 4, 2013
    So this is my first-ever post to BYC - and I hope I'm doing this the "right" way! I need help from any of you seasoned experts out there. I have 13 9-week olds who I've just moved tot their new coop. I had them in an extra-large brooder for the first 8 weeks while we were getting the coop up to snuff. We have had a very mild fall, but now, 4 days into moving them into the new coop, the temperature is going to drop like crazy. Today it was 60 degrees F, and tomorrow night it will be 20, the next night 12, then next week 7! I'm afraid they have not had time to acclimate. Would even those of you who do not think heat lamps are advisable tend to use them for a few weeks under these conditions? THANKS for any help. I've read more about chickens than I ever thought possible, but still have so many questions!
  10. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    I am very anti-heat lamp.

    But, 8 week old chickens are terribly small still, and not yet that fluffy.

    Also, that is one sudden drop!

    I would try to watch them closely, and if most of them huddle in a corner during the day........ I would add a heat lamp.

    I actually do have a heat lamp on right now. My Muscovy duck hatched out 11 ducklings last month, they get the nice insulated coop and a heat lamp. I do have the windows wide open, but none of the wind can get to the ducklings. I think that sometime this next week I will take out the heat lamp (they will be 6 weeks), but I am pretty sure that they look warmer than my chickens did at the same age. will have to watch them and see what they 'tell you'. If there is no wind blasting at them, and they get some heat gain from a window, they might be just fine.

    Remember not to give in to the temptation to close up ventilation. You can baffle ventilation, so no wind blasts at the chickens, but you need to have enough venting to keep the humidity down.

    Also, if they shiver a bit after running about outside, that is OK. You worry if they tend to be all fluffed up and hunkered down in the middle of the day.


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