Here’s some valuable advice from chicken keepers who keep chickens in winter. As a desert dweller, I better leave this subject to the pros! Hope these articles are helpful.
How Cold Is Too Cold For My Chickens?
Here in the North Eastern States, we will be seeing the snow flying soon.By all accounts this year is going to be bad, so we need to prepare ourselves and our flocks for the long months ahead. Many beginner chicken keepers are amazed at just how hardy and tough chickens are. But still, a common concern is how cold is too cold for my chickens? Continue Reading
More… 6 Ways to Avoid Frostbite
If you live in an area with harsh winters, follow these common-sense guidelines to keep your chickens safe. Many of our domestic chicken breeds were cultivated for colder temperatures. They have down feathers insulating their bodies, they naturally move regularly to keep warm and they instinctively know to eat more when Old Man Winter comes knocking. Continue Reading
During these cold winter months, your girls have a lot more to worry about than lack of daylight! One of the biggest problems which can occur is frostbite. It was Ben Franklin that said ‘an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure’. He may not have been talking about chickens at the time, but he was certainly right when it comes to frostbite!
Most new chicken keepers worry about their flock when the temperatures drop. The biggest concern is whether or not a heat source should be added. If you have provided your flock with adequate shelter from the wind and rain or snow, and there’s plenty of hay or straw in their house, I don’t recommend adding a heat source.
The extra things you can do to help your chickens fair the bitter cold is to give them scratch feed before bed and first thing in the morning. This is a hot feed and will help them stay warm, not to mention they love it. If you are worried about frost bite, the best solution is to apply Vaseline to their combs and wattles.
Your chickens will huddle together to stay warm. For peace of mind, stick your hand down between them at night and you’ll be pleased to find they are toasty warm. Chickens are hardy creatures, so my best advice is to not over think the questions involved in caring for them.
Remember, chickens in numbers are warm, and they acclimate rather quickly to temperature changes. If you have young birds that are just out of the brooder, a heat source is necessary until they are fully feathered, usually at about eight weeks of age. Just make sure they have been introduced to the cold and have been given time to acclimate.