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Junior Member
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I Just joined this forum. I live in Virginia, about 60 miles South of Washington DC. I have 6 chickens, 3 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Red Comets and 1 Americana. I am new to Chickeneering, so I probaly will asking alot of questions, and I look forward to your help. Thank you for having me here.
Gary
 

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Premium Member
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Hello & Welcome from Southside, Va.
 

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Hello Stardog! I'm not too far from ya! High Point, North Carolina! You guys get snow or looks of wind and water from storm? How did your chickens fair?
 

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Hi Stardog! Welcome aboard. We're happy to have you join us. Got questions? Ask away. We'll help you along the way. :)
 

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A Round American Woman
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735 Posts
How do prepare your chickens/coop for the winter season?
Thanks,
Gary
Welcome!!

For winter make sure they have a wind proof coop, but you do need good ventilation so that moisture doesn't build up. Moisture can build up and then freeze, and that is how frost bitten combs happen. I have two windows that are about 12 inches by 8 inches and covered in two layers of chicken wire. The one that is on the side without wind is open all winter and the one by the roosts is covered by a wooden shutter that still allows air flow, but blocks wind and rain/snow.

A good layer of straw is good, and they like to scratch and dig through it. They can get bored and pick on each other if there are too many for the space. Even if you free range, and if you can get snow storms they will hang out in the coop to stay out of the deep snow.

My old coop had a 12x16 covered run and that is really nice in the winter because they have extra space to hang out in. I need one here, but that isn't happening really fast. Maybe next year. :)

You can also rig up a water warmer to keep the water from freezing. If not, just have two waterers and keep one inside during the cold and fill with warm water in the morning and switch them back and forth. My husband brought home a metal box that he put a 40 watt light bulb inside with an extension cord. We plug it in when the night temps are below 20 and it keeps the water from freezing. There are things that you can buy, but I like making do better. It's my frugal side.

Welcome to the wonderful wacky chicken world!!
 

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A Round American Woman
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735 Posts
Do chickens drink more water when the temps get colder???
I wouldn't say they drink more, but they need a constant supply of clean water to keep their metabolism up and running. And if they lack in any nutrient/water then they will take from their own bodies to make eggs, which makes them suffer in the long run. Many heritage breeds will stop laying before robbing their bodies for nutrition but the hybrid breeds truck on and lay until death.

It can suck in the winter, carrying warm water twice a day so my husband rigged up a metal box with a light bulb under it that keeps the water from freezing if the temps fall under -15 degrees it still freezes though, but that doesn't happen often here in PA. I always give them warm water when I fill in the winter. If there is a lot of snow and they stay in the coop or close by then I have to fill the waterer once a day (3 gallon) and I have 24 chickens now.
 

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Junior Member
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Me and a hawk are gonna fight....plenty of field mice around....leave my chickens alone......field mice don't lay eggs.:mad:
 

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Senior Member
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Me and a hawk are gonna fight....plenty of field mice around....leave my chickens alone......field mice don't lay eggs.:mad:
how old are your birds?
i'm building a silkie pen over in thr corner of my new coop
silkies are small so i'll cover the top of their run
my opringtons are so much bigger so they should be tough to carry off
 
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