While raising backyard chicken is becoming increasingly popular despite the trifling times, many people struggle with breeding them the right way in winters. Others lose their chickens to the extremity of weather and thus need some tips to keep their chickens warm and healthy throughout winters. If you fall in the latter category, here are some tips to help you raise your backyard chickens.
1. Buying Good Quality Coops
The first tip to keeping your chickens healthy and alive throughout a rough winter is to buy good quality coops. You can buy them from My Chicken Coop or any other pet chicken supplies shop you trust but make sure that they have good quality coops. The condition of a coop directly impacts the amount of air that passes through it. It also has an impact on chickens’ comfort levels. Badly maintained coops can cause the chicken to fall sick or even get hurt in case of any chicken bumps into it.
2. Cover the Draft Sources
In winters, many chicken die due to drafts, the colder temperature which sets inside the coop because of possible air sources. Through proper ventilation is needed for the coop, be sure to block any extra sources of cold winter winds. Otherwise, your chickens will unfortunately die.
To prevent this situation, many chicken breeders use cloth curtains to block out the drafts. Others simply try to block out all sources of air which is also wrong. Chickens need some fresh air to keep them alive and healthy. The balance between proper ventilation and blocking out the drafts is the real deal where many people fail. To overcome this problem, either get help from other breeders, watch YouTube tutorials, or simply contact your coop supplier and ask them to help you maintain the temperature inside the coop.
3. Keep the Coop Warm
The third tip is to keep your chicken coop as warm as possible. You can achieve this goal by either trapping the sunlight inside the coop or try to insulate your chicken by stacking up piles of pine shavings inside their coop. Let these pine shavings rest in the coop and allow your chickens to litter on it. Keep restacking the shavings every now and then and eventually, the temperature inside the coop will rise due to chemical reactions between the pine shavings and chicken litter.
4. Keep Their Wattles Warm
Before the winter takes a severe toll on your chickens’ health, try to keep their wattles warm. Wattles are the comb-like body part on top of a chicken’s head. Their main purpose is to regulate a chicken’s body temperature and maintain the required heat levels in it. Some breeders suggest putting Vaseline or petroleum jelly on their chickens’ wattles in winters to protect them from severe weather conditions.
5. Get them to Roost
The last tip is to get your chickens to roost together. Roosting refers to the act of chicken coming together and fluffing up their feathers in an attempt to keep them warm. You can use this natural instinct and get them to roost together more often in winters so that they can be protected against the cold temperatures naturally.
Raising happy and healthy chickens at home is every chicken breeders’ dream but many of them fail to maintain warmth inside their coops in winters. At times, those who are new to chicken breeding have no idea of the potential dangers of cold temperature. They are clueless about winters and their ability to kill their chickens altogether. Consequently, they are naïve of the process of protecting their chickens in winter and preparing for them proactively. These tips will serve as basic guidance for all such people.