Winter Storm Preparations for Backyard Chicken Keepers

| 1/2/2014 12:02:00 PM

Tillys NestLiving in the northeast, we have just become accustomed to snow and sometimes lots of it during winter. It is always important for us to keep an eye on the weather, as we can quickly go from a morning filled with abundant sunshine into an afternoon with complete white out conditions. One of the most important things that we do when we know a storm is coming is to prepare the chickens and their housing to make weathering the storm easier. Here are some tips as to what we do as we prepare for snow.

First, we are sure to clean the chicken coop.

  • We clean out the coop and nesting boxes and replace everything with a thicker fresh layer of bedding.

Add a supply of fresh water and food inside the coop.

  • You can never tell if the chickens will need to stay inside the coop longer than usual due to unforeseen circumstances.
  • This keeps the food from getting wet and spoiling. It also helps to slow down the freezing process of the waterers.

Keep extra emergency water on hand for your flock.

  • Estimate how much water your flock consumes in one week.
  • Store that amount of water inside so that it doesn't freeze.
  • You may need to rely on this in case your water service is interrupted.

Visit the feed store.

  • Stock up on enough extra feed, grit, oyster shells to last at least a week. Also, stock up on extra pine shavings to add to the muddy run and refresh the coop as needed.

Take inventory of your chicken first-aid kit and restock as necessary.

1/5/2014 10:54:26 AM

Melissa, I didn't know chickens were snow blind. I learn something new, it seems, every time I read one of your blog posts. It's always good to be prepared for isolation during storms especially during the cold winter months. The weather here is nasty cold today. The weather service is as follows: ... WIND CHILL WARNING NOW IN EFFECT FROM 6 PM THIS EVENING TO MIDNIGHT CST MONDAY NIGHT... * WIND CHILL VALUES... ALTHOUGH THEY COULD TOUCH 20 BELOW FOR A WHILE THIS MORNING... THEY WILL FALL TO 30 BELOW TO 40 DEGREES BELOW ZERO TONIGHT WITH LITTLE RECOVERY EXPECTED MONDAY. I'm not going anywhere today. Have a great chicken survival day.

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