Chickens – they are tougher than they look

by admin on February 10, 2011

We are at the midway point of winter and despite the recent frigid weather our chickens are doing surprisingly well. On days like yesterday and today when the mercury in the thermometer struggles to get on the positive side of zero, I leave the chicken coop closed up in an effort to keep things a bit warmer.

I’ve been using two chicken waterers this winter instead of running electricity to the coop and using a heat lamp to keep things from getting too frosty. Every morning (and on really cold days, the afternoon too) I bring out a fresh waterer and take the frozen one down to the basement to thaw out.

I inspect the flock every day for any signs of illness or frozen/frostbite combs. I marvel at how hardy these chickens are and am glad that I didn’t try using heat lamps in the coop. I think they are healthier and hardier by having to adjust to the cold weather. Plus, the light from heat lamps can mess with the chickens sleep patterns which will affect egg production.

Plus, the egg production has not fallen off one bit. Our five Barred Rock hens are producing anywhere from four to five eggs per day. You might say that I’m “eggstatic” about all of these fresh eggs. I know, I know – that was a terrible pun.

In case you are wondering – the chicken coop is insulated and I installed plexiglass over the screened windows to help hold in the heat. Before next winter I plan on installing insulation under the floor and buttoning up the hinged roof a bit for added protection from winter’s icy blasts of wind.

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