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  • #16
    I'm like you & engineer something in my head, get the parts & build it. Nice job on the set up.

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    • #17
      Welcome to your new chickens

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      • #18
        Since that post was from July 2012 I'm betting those birds are in the freezer or have already been Sunday dinner.
        I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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        • #19
          I'm going to bump in sorts...

          I want to ask, who all here has chickens or has in the past and preferably lives in a northern area where it gets cold and snowy in winter.

          I've been thinking about getting some chicks in the next few weeks. My reasoning being that since it takes about 26 weeks till they start laying, I would be getting eggs about late April. My question though is what might I need to do to keep them warm enough to get thru winter.
          I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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          • #20
            Not sure how you would keep them warm but might be the place that sells them could help you with that question. We have been playing with the idea of getting chickens ourselves but would have to figure out a way to fix up some sort of closed in run as we have possum that will kill them running around. We think that is what got our neighbor's chicks. She let them run around in the back yard.

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            • #21
              AJ, yeah I don't think anywhere close has them but there is a place, Metzer or metzler, I think out of CA where you can get all kinds of chicks, turkey, quail, duck etc... Good thought though on asking them about it. I'll look up there site and maybe they have resource info link or I'll email their customer service.

              I'm thinking of building a small tractor out of PVC and netting say 6x10 that I can drag around the yard. I'll build some sort of small secure coop on wheels, kind of a wagon, that I can pull along by hand to put them in at night. I'll wrap it with some hardware cloth and wire that up to a solar fence charger so any critters try to get in they'vee get a discouraging zap. Once I have them in the coop at night I can just pull everything ahead 10' to the next section of fresh yard so the next morning all I have to do before leaving for work is water and feed them and open the coop to let them into the pen area for the day. wash rinse repeat daily

              I'm thinking I need to build the coop first and insulate it some so I can keep it close to the house for the winter where I can run an extension cord out for heat lamps or something. for a run area for the winter I can let them into an old 10x10 dog kennel, though I'm not not sure how much they'd need, want or should be out in the cold weather. My goal is to have 5 to 7 layers so from what I hear I might need to get about double that to cover die off. If I do this and I have some make it to spring I'd be happy. Just not sure if winter is the smartest time to try chickens for my first go of it.

              Any members up north have chickens? If so what do you need to do to get them thru the winter?
              I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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              • #22
                Some breeds of chicken do better with a cool/cold climate. If you live up north where you have snow you will need heat lamps, a bigger coop. Some chickens can and do survive even deep snow as long as they have feed and flowing water.

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                • #23
                  One of my old how to books on raising chickens said that if a rooster's comb get frost bit it will reduce his ability to fertilizer eggs and suggest rose comb (sort of a flat comb) breeds for colder climates. The book was published in 1963 so you might investigate before you take my word for this. I do know chickens do get frost bite on their combs and it takes months before the combs are healthy again.

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                  • #24
                    thanks Rich & Z
                    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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                    • #25
                      I have Isa Brown chickens, a warm insulated coupe, with heat lamps should keep them warm enough in very cold weather. Unfreezing the water is a daily chore, but must be done. Chickens do not like their feet wet all the time, so have a nice dry hay floor place for them to go in and dry their feet for awhile. Chickens are really pretty tough creatures, their feathers, and down keep them warm in the winter, and the hollow tubes in the feathers act like cooling radiators in the summer when it's hot.

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                      • #26
                        Thanks Nettle! So in winter does the egg production completely stop? I've read somewhere that if you put something like a growlight or certain type of flourescent bulb in their coop it'll simulate daylight and can help to keep them producing very limited. Ever hear that or is it likely BS?
                        I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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                        • #27
                          Not BS. I use a 100 watt bulb on a timer to turn the light on to get about 14-16 hrs a day. Again check most recent info for the proper length of time for your area.

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                          • #28
                            Thanks Z. Is it a standard light bulb or one of those daylight spectrum?
                            I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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                            • #29
                              Just a plain old incandescent light bulb. Those are harder to find now But they work fine and put of some heat as well. I've used them as heat lamps for baby chicks their first few days when the weather was cool

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