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Saturday, January 19, 2013

This Is Where We Want To Sleep!

"No, chickie mama, we are not cold."

I laugh at these hens! They really don't care how cold it is out, they like to sleep on top of their "house."
The boxes kept blowing off the table. I was never sure if they were in the boxes when they toppled. I do know they are terrified when I go out and find them blowing in the wind, running around, afraid of even me.
So, this time I had exbf just leave off the top box. It is on the ground for them to use in rainy weather if they want to hide.
When it was 9 F (-12C) two years ago, they slept on top of their boxes. Hens just don't mind the cold at all. They sit on their feet, so they won't freeze. The combs will freeze. Putting Vaseline on their combs will keep the combs from getting frostbitten. The very peaks of their combs were frostbitten two years ago, but the combs' edges did not fall off.  They do have about a foot of pine straw (raked up dry pine needles) that they can sit in.
The camera was just put up against the chain link to take this picture in their 10'x10'x6' raccoon-proof dog pen.
Your turn
Do your hens ever sleep anyplace except where they are supposed to sleep? Have they ever lost their combs to a freeze? .


  1. No comb loss, even though we're in the 20s during winter, and can drop to 9deg or so at the lowest temps. We do have one stupid hen that loves to roost WAAAAY up in a tree, playing chicken (no pun intended) with the local owls. The only way to get her down is by throwing sticks at her, which only sometimes works. She's wiley.

    1. Rae,
      Wow, that chicken is lucky to be alive. Chickens can be so stupid acting, then suddenly get wiley. That is funny that you have to throw sticks at her. I suppose she is regressing back to her jungle nature. Thanks for sharing the hen story.

  2. Our chickens have perfectly wonderful places to sleep and yet a few of them exit the pens by flying through the tops on occasion. I have had damage to a comb through fights with other animals, but never had a lost comb to freezing here.

  3. Jane,
    There are cautionary tales on the internet about frozen combs that fall off. I don't know. I am glad to know I am not the only one with errant hens. Well, Barb has some escapees.

  4. My girls huddle together on the roost directly under their light. So far they seem to be fairly weatherproof.

  5. TMinB,
    Some day, mine will hopefully have an enclosure/house and a heat lamp. Thelma is getting too old for this arrangement. I like the term "weatherproof."


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