Here it is 10:30 and it's finally up to 22 degrees F... up from 18 with windchill down to 9 degrees. Ugh. Do not like. I had to bring Flapper, my favorite buff orpington hen, inside for the night since too many of her feathers have been removed by an overzealous Clyde via passionate love making. (If you ever saw a rooster mate a hen, you would more likely call it chicken r*pe, however; it ain't a loving thing!). With so many of her feathers missing close to her body, I was afraid she'd be too cold in the coop.
The wind was blowing so hard all night long that I was expecting to see the Wicked Witch of the West fly by. It gets sooo windy on this hill. I'm just glad we closed off all the windows to the coop, though some people don't recommend it. It's covered with thick, clear plastic so the sun can get in, but the wind can't. There are vents right near the ceiling all the way around, so there is plenty of ventilation... just no wind. I had to change out all the birds' water this morning because it was frozen most of the way through. Ah well, these are things I expected. Not a bald backed chicken though (well, almost bald)...
I've ordered Flapper (so named because her comb flaps to one side, unlike most of the hens) a "saddle" to keep her warm and Clyde's claws off her poor back. The one I ordered is fleece-lined so should help keep her warm. It will give her feathers a chance to grow back, poor thing. Until I get it, I need to keep her separated from Clyde whether it's cold or not. Maybe I will just remove him from all the ladies for awhile instead of removing her. Give 'em all a break.
Here is picture of what a chicken looks like with a saddle on:
I would never get a pink one for my chickens though. And, I would make my own if I had somewhere to sew, but alas, I don't - especially with a big ol' dog crate in the living area with Flapper in it. She's not thrilled to be away from her "people" and Dusty has learned that his crazed curiosity will warrant a peck on the nose. And now there are pine shavings and straw strewn about the living room floor.
Being a chicken mama sure is entertaining. :)
And I look forward to spring!