Daylight is retreating, leaves cover the ground and frost blankets the early morning hours. This is natures way of telling us that a change of season is upon us. As backyard chicken keepers, it’s time to prepare the coop and flock for the coming cold weather and winter precipitation. Old man winter is on his way.
For new keepers, the first winter with chickens can be a time of apprehension and anxiety. I know these feelings all too well, I was there 12 years ago with my flock as winter approached. Fortunately, winterizing a chicken coop is very simple with minimal cost, no more than the cost of a bag of feed.
Chickens are very simple creatures; all they need is a clean and dry place to call home. Contrary to popular opinion, chickens do not need heaters or other “creature comforts” to weather the worst of old man winter. They come factory installed with down coats, all they need is a barrier around their coop and pen to buffer the worst of the winter winds and weather.
Typically, I use construction grade plastic to buffer the worst of old man winter. This year, with rising inflation and supply issues, I decided to wrap my coops with feeds bags.
We are all familiar with these feed bags. They are tough heavy bags sold for 25 or 50 pounds at farm/feed stores. Due to the weight, they have to contain, they are made of tough material. They are water and weather-resistant and make excellent barriers to buffer winter winds and precipitation.
The procedure for this project is fairly straight forward. Remove the ends of the bags by cutting away the reinforced seam, then cut the bags down the side to allow them to lay flat. With a staple gun, simply staple the bags to the wood around the coop and pen. This is best done with a few helpers, someone can prepare the bags, another can assist in positioning the bags against the wood. That’s it, it’s that simple to prepare your coop and flock for winter.
Visit my YouTube channel to see a video of me winterizing The Kuntry Klucker. I also have a timelapse video of this process.
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