Monday, November 22, 2010

Brrr! cold!

Temperatures in the teens and 20s, and wind gusts up to 40 mph.  Very cold conditions.  The pigs aren't doing what I expected them to do. 
They've chosen to dig themselves into the top of the compost pile.  Under the surface it's pretty warm, but they're ignoring the shelters completely.  The big pigs are.  The smaller pigs are piled into the shelters.  Everyone is eating quite a bit to keep warm. 

Extra hay for the piglets and feeder pigs.  Extra hay for the nursing moms.  Alfalfa and regular hay for the cows.  Puppies get a fresh bedding and a hay bale to close off the entrance to the whelping pen -- cut down on drafts. 
It's cold. 


Shope said...

I have some friends that are afraid they're going to lose some chickens tonight. Are there any precautions to take here? Or are they hardy enough to handle the wind chill? The chickens are in a small make shift coop in an urban back yard(bellingham). Its a tough night for any thing sleeping outside tonight!

Bruce King said...

Chickens are usually pretty good in the cold -- they're covered with excellent insulation. But they do best if their coop is free of drafts and dry.

The biggest challenge when the weather is like this is keeping liquid water available to the animals. Everything will freeze solid tonight.

Nancy - Olympia WA said...

Chickens do well in the cold as long as their shelter/coop has plenty of ventilation to get rid of the trapped cold moist air.

Ventilation up high away from the roosts to prevent drafts from hitting the chickens.

Also, providing wide enough roosts where the chickens can snuggle down over their toes. I use 2 x 4's with the wide side up. Anything wider and the poo on it. Smaller and they have to grip and balance all night.

Some folks will put stuff on their combs to prevent frost bite. I haven't done that yet.

Last year when we had the week long cold snap of teens, a couple of my roos comb tips did get frost bitten.

Mike said...

We had negative 9 degree temps this week. All of our birds did just fine. We just cover the area where drafts can come in with cardboard. All the birds huddle together to keep warm. They are pretty resourceful, they know how to keep warm.