Helping the girls to stay cool

We have been experiencing a heat wave this week. Ebony and Flame have been feeling the heat and were panting with beaks open.

I gave the girls dishes of mash in plenty of cold water and some frozen spinach.

I have tried putting trays of cold water in the run in the past for them to stand in to cool off but chickens don’t really want to stand in water.

I then had a brain wave. I poured watering cans of water in various shady areas in the run. The girls immediately went to scratch in the damp dirt. I thought this would cool their feet. The girls seem to really like this.

Speckles standing in the damp soil
Flame scratching and pecking
Smoke scratching
Salmon joins Speckles and Ebony scratches in another patch behind them
Marmite joins in

I will be doing this every afternoon while it’s hot. Last night at dusk I checked on the girls in the chicken shed. It was still hot and Ebony was standing on the perch with her wings held aloft.

I decided to prop the chicken shed door open as our run is very secure and the open shed door is hidden behind solid fence panels. I also poured a watering can of water over the patio area outside the open door to help it cool a bit more.

I will keep the chicken shed door propped open until this heat wave breaks. I hope it will cool down a bit soon.

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6 Responses to Helping the girls to stay cool

  1. Sophie says:

    I bet they enjoyed that! xx

  2. marion says:

    That was such a good idea.

    • Carol says:

      I don’t know why I didn’t think of it sooner. In the intense heat and the dryness of the run it was a lovely change for them and they all got straight into the damp patches. Now of course the weather has changed and we have had two evenings/nights of heavy rain. It is now back to cool again and there are plenty of wet patches in the run witch have lost their appeal. Still, I will remember to that again when it is hot and dry.

  3. david says:

    Good thinking, Carol. Is Marmite continuing to look better?

    • Carol says:

      It is now six days since Marmite’s last soft shelled egg in the chicken shed. Marmite looks so much better. I just wish she would stop laying because I know her next egg will have her looking miserable again and it so good to see her looking normal when she isn’t laying.

      Smoke is now dropping loads of feathers since her broody spell. Eggs are few and far between at the moment but I don’t mind as long as they all keep well.

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