A simple and effective way to help birds survive the cold season is to set up temporary shelters and feeding spots.
A bird feeder from a plastic bottle can be made from scrap materials, requires little effort and little time. Compared to structures made of wood, cardboard or plywood, it is less durable and resistant to precipitation.
However, in an urban environment, where fixing a heavier and more stable feeder can be problematic, the plastic version has become widespread and in demand.
No professional manufacturing tool required - all components are at hand. The base for the trough is a plastic bottle with a capacity of 1 to 5 liters. A half-liter bottle is too small - there will not be enough space inside for birds, it is inconvenient to handle it.
Tools you need:
This is enough for a normal trough. If desired, it can be improved - unusually designed or modified. In this case, paints, decorative elements and additional containers are added to the list.
The minimum set of tools for work is always at hand
When I write about my chickens, sometimes I come across mistrust. Someone claims that my 8 birds cannot carry 6 eggs a day, this is too much, I am cheating. Others, on the contrary, are very surprised: “How? Only 6 pieces? Why so few, change chickens! "
I'm not going to change chickens. In March they will only be one year old, they are young. Besides, I like this breed - Kuchinsky Jubilee.
Yes, my chickens are thoroughbred, but for “just like that”, this year I plan to bring the same chickens - heaps for sale, get a new experience. Someone writes to me: “Why keep pedigree, and not crosses? You will get more eggs from crosses. "
For those who do not know who crosses are, I will explain: these are specially bred species of chickens that are actively rushing for the first year. Sometimes there may be another second (here, people who know me, if anything, will correct me). then that's all, they need to be removed and replaced with new ones, because egg production quickly fades away.
At the same time, crosses are not capable of reproduction. Their eggs will not produce the same "high-yielding" chickens. Chicks need to be bought anew each time.
But thoroughbred chickens reproduce themselves calmly, support the breed and can be carried for up to 5 years, they do not need to be removed regularly, like crosses. Therefore, we have made our choice in favor of thoroughbreds and do not regret it.
We have built a small winter chicken coop, 5 square meters. This was done on purpose to make it easier to heat in winter.
For the second week we have had frosts for -20, and we heat such a chicken coop with one single heater "Good Heat". Sometimes during the day, when it's sunny, I turn it off, because the temperature in chickens is already close to +20.
There is a decent layer of sawdust on the floor in the chicken coop, about 40 cm. There are 2 windows in the coop, to the east and west, but we still turn on the light for the chickens in winter from 7 am to 7 pm. It is in such conditions that they are kept. While the frosts were not so severe, the birds walked outside every day. But now it is colder than -10, they do not walk, but are constantly in the chicken coop.
Despite a warm coop and light, chickens will not lay well if fed with only one grain. I already had this experience, egg production dropped sharply to 2-3 eggs, when the chickens received only a mash of "wheat-oats-corn-seeds". In our region, the Moscow region, a 30 kg bag of mash costs 750 rubles. We buy it. We also buy compound feed for poultry, also at a price of 700-800 kg per bag.
I do not consider compound feed to be "chemistry" or some kind of non-natural additives, as you sometimes hear. This is a balanced protein diet, which includes soy and sunflower meal, fish or bone meal, phosphate, salt, and crushed shellfish. In other words, if you are giving compound feed, you do not need to give the chickens separately bone meal, shell rock and vitamin supplements.