Preparing A Chicken Coop For A Cold Winter

On this podcast episode, I answer a listener’s question about prepping a coop for winter, specifically about ventilation requirements in a coop. This is an often-underestimated feature in a coop but a very important one.

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The Modern Homesteading Podcast, Episode 103 – August 20, 2018 – Preparing A Chicken Coop For A Cold Winter.

Homestead Updates:

  • Starting to get a lot of tomatoes, which means we started making a lot of salsa and putting a bunch in the freezer for the other tomato products we will be making.
  • Still picking a lot of beans and cucumbers as well.
  • All the fall crop plants are popped up and are on their way to providing us with some late season goodies.
  • Beginning to do quite a bit of seed saving of the heirloom vegetables.
  • Organized a bunch of my seeds in my file box system.
  • I saw another great way to organize seeds using photo boxes. (Thanks for sharing that idea with me Elizabeth)

Question For Today’s Podcast Episode:

Michael asks: My questions are about wintering chickens, we live in South Central Alaska north of Anchorage. We just converted an 8 x 11 shed with a lean-to-style roof into a chicken coop. We also have another 8 x 12 shed with a gable-style roof that we will be converting into a coop for our turkeys. Both buildings have wooden floors.  

We will be insulating both coops before winter and I am thinking of using the pink stuff with plywood as the wall covering. But my main question is about the ventilation for the coops in the winter. How much ventilation do they need? Where should the ventilation be (high, low, one side, or all sides)? Our winter temps in the winter can get down to -20 to -30. It is a dry cold and we do get some wind but not a lot. One of my thoughts for ventilation was to use round vents as you find in an older RV. 

I Discuss: 

  • Insulating Chicken Coops and Other Animal Housing Structures.
  • Why You Need Need Ventilation.
  • The Difference Between Having Ventilation and Having A Draft.
  • How Much Ventilation You Need To Have.
  • Where should you place ventilation?
  • Where To Put Ventilation In A Coop.
  • Types Of Vents You Can Install.
  • Using Supplemental Heat Sources.


Proper Coop Ventilation Illustration –

The Backyard Homestead Book of Building Projects: 76 Useful Things You Can Build to Create Customized Working Spaces and Storage Facilities, Equip the … and Make Practical Outdoor Furniture –

The Homestead Life:

A segment where each episode I share something that’s better in my life because of homesteading.

New Life! No matter how many times it happens it still amazes me. It’s a humbling thing to have animals born on the homestead, then raise them to full size and have them provide meals for you. It will cause you to never look at your food the same, you will have a deeper appreciation for the meat on your table.

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    Author, blogger, podcaster, homesteading and permaculture enthusiast. I have a passion for sharing what I learn and helping others on their journey. If you're looking for me, you'll usually find me in the garden.

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