Winterize a Catawba Tractor?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by adamziegler, Oct 30, 2011.

  1. adamziegler

    adamziegler Out Of The Brooder

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    Long time lurker... first time poster (I think)!

    I am a complete newbie. I live in North Western Illinois. Cold winters and hot summers.

    Quick history so far. We started with 4 chicks in the mail (2 buffs, 1 BPR, and 1 dominique) back in early June. We lost two (the buffs) to an animal when we were out of town. We replaced them with 1 buff and 1 Ameraucana from a local breeder (hatched in late April). The BPR was found dead one day in the coop. Down the three healthy birds. They were are starter feed + 'free range' ~6 hrs a day 4-5 times a week in the back yard/ garden. In the past month I switched them over to layer feed. (Still no eggs, but I will start another thread for that.)

    I built a Catawba coop for the birds. This may have been a mistake for my climate. I had good intentions to impress the neighbors and keep the yard in good shape. The tractor, after a couple months of moving it, just ended up in a 'fallow' bed of the garden. Winter is now fast approaching. What are some suggestions to winterize for 3 birds in an 'A-frame' chicken tractor?

    I have considered placing visqueen over the roof/ open hardware cloth sides, plus a bit at the ends of the roost door. I know this will act as a wind break, but may also reduce ventilation.

    Also, in this type of tractor, do chickens need food supply up in the roost during the winter, or will they go down into the run to get food from the feeder?

    Thank you in advance.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2011
  2. adamziegler

    adamziegler Out Of The Brooder

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    Anyone have even a slight suggestion? Maybe a criticism?

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  3. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Adam,First off [​IMG] the the BYC

    This community is very picture driven. You will hear a ton of We need pictures. True to form you need to post what you have and what you need or want to do.

    The north and the west sides are the most important to get started on but like I said can not be specific unless we see pictures.
     
  4. thaokou21

    thaokou21 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    true, we cant help you unless we see pictures.....
     
  5. adamziegler

    adamziegler Out Of The Brooder

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    Wonderful. How about these?

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  6. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would fill in as much as possible on the north and wet side . Get it close to the house or garage for it to become a barrier. What is under the covered side? Any feeders or roost or nest boxes hidden from view? If not you could build nests or roosts up there hidden from the elements? Do you get what I am saying? Take a picture of up underneath the covered area from one end, can you?
     
  7. thaokou21

    thaokou21 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Looks good. I think if you put some plexiglass around all the bottom opening, your chicken could have a warm and draft free coop. It will be like a green house. You know how hot it gets in a green house even when its winter. I think hay would be ok for the ground in your coop. As for your intentions to impress the neighbors, hay made not be a good idea but since you only have a couple of chicken, it will kept the ground warm and its easy to clean after winter is over. Thats what I think...
     
  8. adamziegler

    adamziegler Out Of The Brooder

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    The top contains two nest boxes and a roost. It is filled with about 3-4" of pine shavings. (The birds access the roost via a ramp.) The feeders are currently located in the bottom screened in area. I have a larger hanging feeder now instead of the "quart jar" feeder shown in the picture. I do however still use the "quart jar" waterer.

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  9. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The only thing I see missing really is some venting up top. On both Gable sides of the coop I would cut a 3" X 8" vent hole and put chicken cloth over them. Other than that I think this little coop is Golden [​IMG]
     

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