Just thought I'd ask my online friends about artificial light in the coop. What do you think? Do you add light in the coop? There's so much passion among backyard farmers about it.
Here's my take. I do it. I have a light in the coop which stays on about 12 or 13 hours/day. I think it does help the hens to lay in the wintertime. Plus my coop just naturally gets dark, it's only got a small window to let in natural daylight. And that window doesn't face the sunny side at any time of the day.
We have 17 hens and are averaging about 9 to 11 eggs a day right now, in January in Maryland.
How many hens do you have?
Do you supplement with artificial light?
How many eggs do you get a day?
Here's today's photos. The coop always looks dirty - I cleaned it a week ago. This is the nest box scene at 11AM.
There were lots of birds hanging in the coop this morning.
These hens were in the nestboxes this morning:
Chloe. She's broody. She's starting to look bad. We are going to have to break her of her broodiness if she doesn't get over it soon. She's looking very dehydrated. Poor girl.
Zoner. Her name fits her. She's such a space cadet. I love her!
We also add plastic eggs in the nest boxes. The hens seem to like them, although they know they are not real. They are supposed to encourage the birds to lay. When the hens are in a bad mood they throw the fake eggs out of the nest boxes.
I'm looking forward to your comments!