winterizing the coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Megs, Oct 13, 2009.

  1. Megs

    Megs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 19, 2009
    this is my first winter in some years to have chickens, i live in victoria bc, the weather has cooled right down (from nice summer days of 15-25) recently, this week is lows of 7*C and highs of 12*C, which is 45* -54* F, and it will get colder from here, typical winter nights/days get down to/just below freezing.

    my one coop is insulated and i have wintered bantams in it previously, so im not to worried about it, i had a heat lamp on them in the winter and we are just wiring it for one for this winter.

    the coop i have a few photos of is the one just undergoing winterization, we will be putting in styrofoam insulation and covering with thin plywood (it already has one 3/4" plywood layer and a layer of concrete boards skinning the outside), filling in some small gaps, and insulating the roof (somehow, its a satalite dish covered in metal roofing so we have to figure out what to do)

    the pictures are of the most recent work which is the instalation of the power box (each switch is going to be run to a heat lamp in one of the several coops) that is attatched to the one heat lamp in the photo, i may add another lamp to that coop later as it is fairly large (10' radius). also added door to the run as it was open for the summer months, we cut a 12"X12" pop hole in the bottom for the chickens to go in/out as they please. coop painting will happen in the spring once construction is complete [​IMG]

    ETA: i have also seen the thread for a cookie tin water heater and i am intrigued, i think i might rig one up and give it a try, how do you position it in the coop? im asuming it must be up off the bedding (i have woodchip/sawdust mix) for safety.

    electricity box!! yay
    [​IMG]

    heat lamp
    [​IMG]

    the door!!
    [​IMG]

    the window
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2009
  2. Klorinth

    Klorinth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 3, 2008
    Winnipeg, Manitoba
    As I am being reminded as I write this... "it is all relative"

    Your birds will be fine. More than fine actually, they will thrive. I'm writing from Winnipeg and in the process of building our first coop here. Like yours it is insulated(4") and sheathed in plywood, deep bedding, etc.

    But here are the differences:
    - No electricity... hence No heat. They need to handle the -40 celcius that we get, or not.
    - Sunporch. 6'x8' polycarbonate sheathed porch. Passive solar heating. No snow. Dry. place to sun, eat, have fun.
    - Solar powered forced ventilation from sunporch into coop in the winter and from porch to outside in the summer.
    - Perch and nests covered by insulated hood to hold a warm air bubble inside the insulated coop, but away from any direct ventilation. Air is moved through the coop to keep it dry but no breeze will strip the heat from the perch area.

    I would say you are doing all of the right things and don't need to worry about it. Remember where it is you live and remember what they are designed to handle. They have insulation that we do not. A nice dry place to perch out of the wind is all they need in your part of the country. It's all good. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2009
  3. Megs

    Megs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 19, 2009
    thx for the reply [​IMG]

    im quie pleased with the addition of that door (it was open for the summer, as it is beautiful here in the summer and it was plenty warm) and that one heat lamp, it is noticibly warmer (yay no drafts) once you step into the coop. my smaller 'dog' house chicken coops will be getting a heat lamp each as well.

    i was mainly worried as i have bantam chickens and this is my first winter with most of these breeds so im not sure how delicate/hardy them are. i also dont want their combs to get damaged due to cold (a few of my breeds, japanese and cochins included, have quite large combs), this particular coop houses my younger birds (4+ months) so i wanted to make sure they will be ok in there in the winter [​IMG]

    we do have a generator in case of power outages (id hate to get them all used to being cozy and having power go out when the temp dips below 0) so i can plug them in and keep them at their normal temp.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2009
  4. Klorinth

    Klorinth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 3, 2008
    Winnipeg, Manitoba
    You don't need to worry about them so much Megs.

    With all that you have done for them, they will do well. Think of it this way... An incandescent light bulb puts out most of its energy in heat not light. Hence the reason heat lights work. A chicken puts out heat too. About the same as a 15 watt bulb, apparently. Maybe a bantam is more like 10 watts. I don't know, but you get the idea.

    You have given them a nice dry and insulated place, and good food. In your climate that is all that they need. The heat lamp is like having a sauna in your house. I can be a really nice luxury.
     
  5. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

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