Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Winterize a Backyard Chicken Coop

 It doesn't get super cold here in NC, but warm backyard chickens mean happy backyard chickens and a light bulb in the coop means increased egg production, so we spent some time last weekend getting the girls ready for those cold, rainy , winter days when they just don't want to leave the chicken coop. It wasn't hard to winterize the backyard chicken coop at all. Owning chickens is easier than you think.

When we built our coop, we used a coop kit very similar to this one so there isn't a lot of space. That wasn't a deal breaker for us because the girls forage around our suburban backyard so really they just needed somewhere to hang out when it's rainy and sleep at night.

Not everybody puts heaters in the henhouse for their girls, but most chicken owners will use a light in the winter because it increases egg production. This is the light we used from the video below.

Before we got the heater the girls piled on top of each other in a single nesting box. They like being cozy, even if it means the hen on the bottom might suffocate, so we figured we might need to go ahead and start finding a way to keep the henhouse a little warmer. We went with this standing heater, because it was safe to use inside of the coop and we didn't want to be stressed out about fire hazards. The heater stands on its own which is perfect. We stood it along one of the henhouse walls to encourage them to use their roosting bars which are near the heater. 

We also added another roosting bar to encourage them to hang out on the bars for easier hen house cleaning and a heated water base for the run, to keep the water from freezing.

We made a strip door using this plastic from Amazon.

Our winterizing checklist, (chick-list 😂):

  • Clean out the run and coop. Fresh shavings, wash feeders and waterers
  • Run a multiple outlet extension cord from the house, burying the cord when it crosses areas with frequent foot traffic or dog poop
  • Close doors & windows
  • Make a strip door to keep in heat
  • Set up heater
  • Set up heated water base
  • Mount laying light on a side wall
  • Set up timer to run light and put heater on a schedule
  • Double-check all of your locks and make sure you are predator proof

Download this free infographic checklist!

No comments:

Post a Comment