DIY







Prepare Your Chicken Coop for Spring's Warmer Days


| 2/6/2017 10:59:00 AM



springchickens1

Busy chickens at pasture

Though we’re still in the deep of winter, days are beginning to lengthen and, at least around here, spring really seems to be just around the corner. The spring-like feeling is validated by the new grass – as winter is the green season here – and by the narcissuses and cyclamens that are beginning to pop up.

Our chickens pick up the cue of longer days and generally resume laying around February, even though it’s still cold. The young pullets hatched at the end of last season – say, September or October – are generally ready to start laying in February or March.

Late January generally finds me making an enthusiastic survey of the coop and the flock, planning all the things I must do in preparation for spring and the more productive season of egg-laying and chick hatching. So what should chicken owners do at the end of winter?



Nesting Boxes 

Nesting boxes are the most obvious accommodation for your layers. Make sure you have an adequate number of boxes (one per 3-4 chickens). Nesting boxes should be comfortable-sized and sheltered from wind and rain. Pad them with straw, dry grass, dry leaves or wood shavings; you might also want to invest in dummy eggs to encourage your hens to lay there. Plastic dummy eggs can be bought very cheaply in a toy store or ordered via eBay, but ceramic eggs will last much longer and be a lot less easy to throw out.





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