I am losing a chicken a day! Is it the heat please read

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It is quite hot here is OK at the moment 101. I have the chicken coop in the trees, well shaded, clean water and food and it seems one is dying everyday, the past three days. Today I put in a fan which they were all standing in front of then went back in a few minutes ago with another one dead. They are 2 years old, the coop is clean is it the heat? Got any ideas. Can let them out because I did so last month and the coyotes got 4 of them. I am down to 5 from 12. Thanks in advance, I have a daughter who is crying!!

-- Debbie (bwolcott@cwis.net), July 12, 2001


Try using a mister system. I live in a very hot area and my birds were squatting and panting. Shade was`nt enough. You can find this mister at most home depot,hardware type stores. They are quite cheap and very easy to hook up. Make sure you know the distance from you`re water source to the coop. Place the mister above the birds if possible to reduce the temperature. Not too close or they will stay wet. Consider also, the prevailing winds. I check the wind now and then and sometimes it is blowing the mist away from the birds. Simply hook the mister in a better area. My birds are loving it! This really works.

-- Viv Lander (century2kay@webtv.net), July 12, 2001.

I live in texas and we're hitting 100* weather also. I freeze several whipped topping tubs with water (you can also use milk jugs). Every day, i pop out several tubs of ice and place in designated "wet areas" that the chickens stand/lay in. I also have a box fan going on high the entire time. My chickens also have to be confined until i get home, so they're in the coop all day. So far this has worked for me, haven't had a chicken die, yet. A few other ideas.....i've planted morning glory on the west side of the coop. I'll also add vitamins/electrolytes to help keep them hydrated. And on those days approaching 110*, i'll go out and spray the outside of the coop(west side & roof) with the hose. Cools down the inside tremendously. Hope you don't lose any more! Good luck!

-- Buk Buk (Bukabuk@hotmail.com), July 12, 2001.

When we had an extreme heat wave a few years ago I hosed down the coop roof with cold water every few hours and it really lowered the temperature in the coop.

-- diane (gardiacaprines@yahoo.com), July 12, 2001.

Another way to cool it down -- put an oscillating lawn sprinkler on top and let it run.

-- julie f. (rumplefrogskin@excite.com), July 12, 2001.

Debbie, Here are some hints that i read: Keep sool water for them as much as possible as cool water will reduce their body temp if heat is the problem. Also, reduce their feed as feed will generate more body heat. I read this in a poultry book. Also, the fan idea is a good idea. We put a large box fan in the window of the coop to draw the air towards them. Good luck.

-- JoAnn in SD (jonehls@excite.com), July 12, 2001.

In addition to all the other things, reduce the carbo content of the feed, if you can ... JoAnne was pointing at this a little. Higher carbo content in the feed makes them "burn hotter".

-- Dave in MN (peasedj@sparc.isl.net), July 13, 2001.

Our prob;em is in the winter our rooster can't take the cold(iam from Ny)so we have to bring him in side.Well basments are cool so you may want to buy chicken cages and put them down there on hot days.By the way do they have basment in texas??If they don't you may want to spray cold water on them?? I don't know if this will help i hope it does or may be some how chill the hay so thats cold?? Joy palmer Ny

-- Joy Palmer (PlantationEgg@aol.com), July 14, 2001.

I mentioned this to a friend, and he mentioned putting a fly-tarp suspended over the roof by at least a foot. Said that the heat stays off of the roof that way and air circulates under it and keeps it cooler. He's not from Texas either, and our weather hardly ever gets as bad as yours, but it might be worth trying.

-- julie f. (rumplefrogskin@excite.com), July 14, 2001.

I think u may have a bigger problem.We have temperatures all year to both extremes Very very hot to below zero. I would bet u may have sick birds. I would take the chickens out and disinfect the coop with bleach . If you are not using medicated chick feed. I reccomend that during stress full time u do. If your chickens do have a virus u may want to check with your feed store and see what they may have. good Luck

-- paul miller (millerclan@alltel.net), July 15, 2001.

I had this problem last year. It wasn't heat at all. They were sick. Put 1/2 cup vinegar to 1 gallon water in the coop. Let them have this for 2-3 days and then back to regular water. Clears any parasite out there is. Still need to clean the coop house out well too though. Hope this helps.

-- (stephanie.wilkerson@experian.com), July 17, 2001.

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