How To Raise Chicken In Winter
how to raise chicken in winter? Chickens are hardy little buggers and do very well in cold climates! Frankly, overheating usually poses a more immediate threat to a chicken’s life than cold weather. After all, chicks are essentially walking and quacking miniature feather boas! While they may not like the cold, chickens can easily survive even when it’s a dozen degrees below zero outside, especially if they have a comfortable coop for the winter.
However, if you are interested in how to raise chicken in winter, e.g. how to raise chicken broilers in winter, and how to raise laying hens in winter, e.g. where do people raise chickens in winter? What temperature is too cold for chickens? Do chickens need a coop in the winter? Can chickens get through the winter without heat? While you may be concerned about your chickens getting cold in the winter, there are many steps you can take to keep them comfortable.
Here are some tips on how to raise chickens for eggs and meat to keep your hens happy and healthy during the coldest months, including how to keep hen chicken warm in winter, ways to keep the coop dry and draft-free, and what to feed them. Read on to learn more about how to raise chickens in your backyard in winter.
There are many things you can do to keep your flock warm, healthy and happy in cold weather. These include winterizing the coop with extra insulation, creating a protected outdoor space for them to enjoy, keeping an eye out for frostbite, and providing food and water in slightly different ways. in our another article we talked about how to raise chickens in spring.
10 tips on raising chickens in winter
1. gain weight
By increasing body weight when raising chickens in winter you can increase individual energy storage and thus improve the ability of the group to resist cold stress. It is proved that the use of green weight gain and weight gain nutritional additives can rapidly increase the body weight of broiler chickens and increase the heat accumulation per unit area of the flock. It is more suitable for winter application.
2. supply of energy
Provide enough energy to enable chickens in the north to withstand the cold. Increasing the use of energy feeds, such as corn, in the normal feed can greatly improve the chickens’ resistance to cold from a nutritional point of view, thus improving their ability to lay eggs in winter.
3. protect cold and keep warm
When raising chickens in winter, the temperature requirements in the chicken coop determine the egg-laying ability of the flock and are related to the success or failure of chicken farming. This is the most important point in how to raise chicken in winter, for this reason, in winter the chicken coop is particularly important to prevent cold. Generally speaking, the temperature of the chicken coop should be kept at 35℃-28℃ for chicks and 27℃-22℃ for breeders; the temperature of the chicken coop for adult chickens should be kept at 21℃-18℃.
In winter, the temperature outside the chicken coop is mostly -30 to 40 degrees, which requires the use of heating facilities inside the coop to achieve the required coop temperature. The main heating facilities are stoves, heaters, geothermal heaters, hot air furnaces, air conditioners, etc.
At the same time, the external walls of the chicken coop must also be insulated. For example, double windows, order plastic sheets, add a layer of cold-proof layer on the roof, use benzene board as insulation layer on the external wall, and plastic canopy to cover the whole chicken coop, just leave the entrance to and from the coop.
4. stocking density of chickens
During the feeding process, individual chickens also continue to give off heat as a result of their high metabolism. The heat emitted between chickens is valuable in winter, and increasing the stocking density per unit area of chickens will increase the accumulation of heat per unit area when the coop needs to be heated to maintain the required temperature.
5. Dehumidification and ammonia removal
The confinement of the chicken coop also hinders the reduction of humidity in the coop. The increase in relative humidity is the enemy of raising chickens in winter, while the increase in relative humidity will gradually accumulate harmful gases such as ammonia in the chicken coop. When the concentration of harmful gases exceeds the standard, it will cause different degrees of harm to chickens.
Therefore, timely dehumidification and ammonia removal is of great importance. The main methods are: relatively small amount of water for chickens, increase the temperature of the chicken coop, increase ventilation, add pharmaceuticals to reduce ammonia and deodorize, etc.
ventilation is an important way of how to raise chicken in winter, in order to keep chickens warm in the winter, the coop must be closed. This causes insulation, but also hinders the elimination of harmful gases. Therefore, it is important to keep warm while providing proper and effective ventilation to achieve a fresh and natural microclimate in the coop.
There are many different ways to ventilate, the common ones are opening skylights, using high flow fans, vertical ventilation techniques, etc. One point to note is that ventilation must achieve an effective ventilation rate, otherwise, even if you are ventilating every day, you will not achieve your purpose.
7. coal choice
Coal heating is a must-do daily routine for most chicken farm families when raising chickens in winter. This is a common traditional way of how to raise chicken in winter without electricity, whether it is stove heating or hot air furnace heating, there are certain requirements for burning coal. In rural areas, the economic conditions, heating is mainly to the home furnace heating. This not only requires a high calorific value of coal, but also to minimize the pollution of the chicken coop by coal dust.
8. Disease control
preventing disease is the most important tips of how to raise chicken in winter, diseases are inevitable in the process of raising chickens in winter, so it is especially important to do a good job of disease control, which is also the focus of winter chicken raising. In winter, common diseases in chickens are carbon monoxide poisoning, ascites syndrome, and chronic respiratory diseases. In order to prevent these diseases, in addition to strengthening ventilation, drugs should be added to the food regularly. preventing diseases is an important thing of how to raise chicken in winter.
9. light management
Scientific lighting is very beneficial to chickens. For laying hens, scientific and reasonable light intensity and time have a very obvious effect on improving egg production rate. Properly extending the lighting time for chickens can increase their feeding opportunities, accumulate physical energy and resist the adverse effects of low temperatures on chickens.
10. Dust reduction measures
While chickens are moving around, cleaning manure, heating coal, etc., there is more or less soot. Soot is the great enemy of chickens growing in closed coops and often causes respiratory diseases in chickens. Dust reduction measures are mainly spray disinfection, ventilation, etc., especially when adding coal and digging ash in the furnace. Not only should the action be light, but also when cleaning the ash, it should be mixed with water before it is cleaned up. Reduce the occurrence of soot when raising chickens in winter.
keep chickens warm in winter
1. Use sunlight to absorb heat
Winter days may be shorter, but you can still use sunlight, which is the best way of how to keep chickens warm in winter, during the day to gain heat and help keep your chickens warmer in winter for longer in the darker hours. Well-insulated windows can act as sun traps, especially if you have dirt or dark slate floors, or if you use the deep litter method.
Increasing the “thermal mass” contained in the coop will also keep it warmer for longer. “Thermal mass” is a measure of how much heat is absorbed by a material for later release. The more thermal mass in the coop, the more consistent it will be in releasing heat after the sun goes down.
2. Use of the “deep bedding method”
The deep bedding method in how to keep chickens warm in winter is not only a sustainable way to manage bedding in the coop, but it also helps to isolate the flock during cold weather. To begin, simply lay a layer of pine shavings or similar organic material on the floor. There is no need to clean or replace the waste that has accumulated in the flock; you simply stir the bedding with a light rake and let the natural movement of the flock do the rest.
If made properly and with regular additions of pine shavings, the bedding will begin to form a compost layer that welcomes in good microorganisms and allows them to consume the unhealthy bacteria in the chicken manure. Not only does this help isolate your coop during the winter, but it also helps prevent lice and mite infestations and is an easier way to manage waste.
3. Keep the chicken coop well ventilated
While you should not have any large holes in your coop to let in cold air, you must also remember not to reduce air flow too much as this can lead to serious problems such as ammonia buildup. To prevent this, you should make sure that you have an adequate ventilation system.
Vents should be placed towards the roof of the coop, where cold air cannot flow directly to your chickens. By exhausting the warm, moisture-filled air and replacing it with cooler, drier air, you will be able to reduce humidity and prevent mold from growing in your bird’s bedding. you can check more information about how to keep chickens warm in winter.