Natural Living Des Moines


Henhouse in Winter by sarahtar
February 8, 2010, 6:24 pm
Filed under: Food

I have gotten a few emails over the winter about how the Girls are doing, how they’re keeping warm, etc. First, let me note that I spoil my girls. Second, let me note that chickens do really well in cold temperatures. Third, the way I’ve winterized my henhouse is not the only, the best, or even necessarily a particularly great, way of doing it.

Alright, towards late fall, we moved the henhouse to its winter location, which is around the side of our house, close to the back door. This way, I have a minimum of walking to do. Most mornings, even when it’s really cold, if I”m just running out to leave water and get eggs, I don’t have to bundle up.

Henhouse in Winter

One side of the henhouse has no useful purpose in winter. It is just windows for summer. I covered it in plastic wrap outside. This keeps out the wind and also dripping water.

Henhouse in Winter

I use the deep litter technique, so they have LOTS of litter. The white/multi colored fabric there is an old sheet (I use it when I tie dye) that I stapled to the inside wall – the same one pictured above, but inside – and then stuffed with shredded paper. Originally, the wall was covered with straw, but the girls got bored in December and pulled it all down.

Henhouse in Winter

You can see the insulated walls, their two perches, and then their water there on the left. I was keeping the water outside, but, well, some days they don’t go outside and also, I no longer have access to the run. The door is effectively frozen shut.

Henhouse in Winter

The nest boxes are the coldest part of the whole henhouse, not really well-thought-out for winter. I have an ongoing problem of frozen eggs.

Henhouse in Winter

And there’s the girls.


1 Comment so far
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I never thought about the nesting boxes being too cold. I am making plans right now for our chicken coop that we are building. We have the nesting boxes sticking out the side like yours. I will have to think about how to make that warmer in the winter.

Good to know the hens are doing so well with this cold weather. That has been my biggest worry!

Comment by Sara




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