Q: I have to bring my hen and chicks indoors for the winter. I’m a new “mother” so I’m not sure how to treat them. I placed them near a window for as much light as possible, otherwise I don’t know what else to do to make them comfortable. I wonder about water, how much and when.
A: You might not need to bring them in for the winter. It depends on how young your chicks are, and how cold it gets where you live. Once chicks are 8 weeks old they have adult feathers and can stay fairly warm on there own. You want to make sure they stay dry. Once chickens are fully grown they can deal with temperatures down into the teens without any supplemental heat. Something that helps is to give them some cracked corn right before they turn in for the night. It has a lot of carbs and fat which keep their metabolism going through the night giving them a little extra internal heat. As for water, they should always have access to clean water, which is the biggest problem in the winter because it can freeze. I hope that helps, and feel free to ask any additional questions.
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