For the most part chickens don't mind winter. As long as there isn't too much snow, too much cold, and too much darkness. Yep, they are a goldilocks animal. Luckily all those things are easily mitigated with some heat lamps, lights, and a roof. If they are kept happy, like goldilocks, they keep laying their plump eggs until something gets too extreme.
In winter this is usually the cold, as keeping them warm enough to lay when it is well below zero can be hard as they also need plenty of fresh air. And actually, the first sign that something is too extreme for them is that they slow down laying eggs. Then I adjust and try to keep them as near to the goldilocks zone as possible.
So far they are happy and laying up a storm! So don't forget to stop by tomorrow in Libby at noon to get all the eggs and micros you need for the holidays!
P.S. Duck eggs make delicious baked yummies! Even if you don't wanna make 'em, give some to someone who does (or who you would like to) so you can have yummy holiday treats!
Dust bathing is important for hen health and comfort. It's their daily shower and salon sesh and it gets rid of icky mites (the bird version of lice), and keeps their feathers clean (which is integral to keeping them warm and dry). They have a few favorite spots that are super dusty and stay super dry! Once those spots aren't accessible from heavy snowfall, I take those blue and gray totes, fill them with nice soft dirt and place them in their runs to provide fun group bathing opportunities all winter long!
What's available this week?