A lot of chicken coop owners are worried about the feasibility of rearing chickens over the cold winter seasons. This could potentially be a problem because chickens will only strive well and lay their eggs if there’s an adequate level of warmth and sunlight. Fortunately, there are a couple of ways to overcome these problems. The first would be to use an artificial form of lighting within the coop itself so that it would feel as if the sun is still out. Your chickens will not be able to tell the difference so don’t you be concerned about that!
The most common types of lights used would be fluorescent types, but you must ensure that they aren’t too bright to the point that they’re glaring. Otherwise, your chickens might just stay away from them. Also, the color of the light is important. It must look like the color of sunrays, which are ideally a mix of light yellow and orange, and perhaps with a tinge of red too. With these, your chickens should feel right at home and the egg production can continue even during the coldest of winter. This brings us to another point that I’d like to make: the warmth.
Although chickens have a higher resistance or tolerance to cold compared to us human beings thanks to their thick feathers, they would still require some form of artificial warmth to retain their body temperature. Just like how we need fire or a heater to keep our house warm to live comfortably in, chickens will require this too. A good way to keep your chickens warm will be to install a heater within the coop itself or to rely on the heat emanated from the lights in the coop. If you opt for the latter, you may wish to purchase those that are specifically made to do this. Not all lights will give off sufficient heat so you’ll want to test them out for yourself before you install them in your chicken coop. Also, depending on how many chickens you are keeping inside your coop, the amount of heating equipment or lighting will vary. Since chickens themselves can share the heat produced from each of their bodies, the bigger and more packed the coop is, the lesser amount of heating units you’ll need to keep them comfortable.
If you wish to save up on heating equipment, you could also just stuff more straw into the nesting or roosting area. In fact, you could simply fill up the corners or scatter them all over the coop since they can function as an insulating material. This will prevent the heat that has been accumulated during the daytime from escaping into the night as it gets colder. Plus, the warmth from the chickens themselves can be retained much more effectively too, as long as they stay on top of the straw. Since these materials are essentially cost-free, you should be generous with these.
As for the summer season, chickens usually do not have problems with the heat, regardless of how hot it might get. It is the cold that they are more afraid of. Just make sure that your chickens are always kept warm and there will be little to no variances in your egg production rate over the spring or winter seasons.