You know how Sacagawea and Lewis and Clark finally decided at some point to stop for the winter and quit hiking? They looked at each other somewhere in the Dakota Territory or Montana (or whatever THAT was before it was Montana) and said, “dang, it’s gettin cold up here! Maybe we should build a fire and get some firewood and food and hole up until Spring?!”
Well, we’re not explorers, nor have we built a fire. But that’s not to say that suburbia (I’ve warned you before!) isn’t fraught with danger. You’ve got to keep a weather eye on things so you aren’t caught by surprise by the bad stuff the world can throw at you.
All I’m really saying is that a week or two ago I put the winter boarding up on the chicken coop. I also cleaned out the crappy hay (literally) (pun intended), and used most of a fresh bale of hay (straw really) (cuz they don’t need nutrition out of the hay – otherwise I’d NEED to buy straw) for the girls to scritch around the coop.
Also, I’ve been reading my chicken resource book, “The joy of keeping chickens: The ultimate guide to raising poultry for fun or profit”, by Megyesi. That book says the hens need only 1 box per 5 hens as a laying box. We built the coop with 5 boxes – one for each hen. Our thinking was this would be an UPSCALE coop, a desirable property, the sought-after zip code. All it really did was make 4 unused boxes, and me climb past the hanging feeder, around the waterer, under the roosting 2 x 4, and into the last box on the right – the least convenient box out there.
I removed 4 of the boxes and put only one roosting box right straight back from the door. Easy for me to step in the coop (only one step which makes poop avoidance easier) and retrieve the eggs.
I haven’t covered the door with the winter wood yet. It’s not too cold and they get so bored in there with nothing to look at.
A chicken’s gotta dream, right?