When summer hits— so does hurricane season! I have been blessed to not have to evacuate during a hurricane. But boy oh boy, I am NOT looking forward to the time when I will have to. Tropical storm Cindy was enough for me– and that was way too early in the season. I cannot imagine how the next 3 months will go.
There is a big debate in the chicken world.. What do you do with your flock when you have to evacuate? Some good ole common sense is what is needed in this situation. There are several steps you can take in order to make sure your chickens are out of harms way. Throughout this article, I will go over some ideas on what you can do to keep your flock safe.
Take them with you!
This is not ideal for people who have an entire flock of chickens. For me, especially now that we are down to one currently, I can put Pearl into a cage and along for the ride. Can you imagine?! 2 children, 4 dogs, and a chicken? Oh Lawd!
Bring them indoors!
Bring those crazy chicks inside 😉 Do you have a garage? Do you have an enclosed space from the weather? This is always a viable option! Take them out of the wind. If you have to evacuate, then it is a safer option if you cannot take them with you! Leave plenty of water and food for them if you have to leave. Create nesting boxes with sand, hay, or wood chips, that will keep them warm. As with every animal in a storm, chickens too get scared. make the proper arrangements to keep them safe.
Lock them in their coop!
When you have too many– always make sure they are locked up safe. Out of the rain, wind, hail, tornadoes, and debris that hurricanes bring with it. You are still risking that their coop is strong enough to withhold a storm of that nature, but at least they will be out of harms way with everything else. If you lock them in their coop, and you have a mobile coop, make sure to put it in a location safe for them. For instance, away from trees, maybe up against a wall of the house, under a shed out of the storm. If you have a stationary coop, make sure all windows are boarded and that there is enough ventilation for them inside.
Other Basic Things to Do!
Stock up on feed. Depending on the category of the hurricane, you will need to take measures as far as food goes. Once the hurricane hits, supplies will be limited and stores will be closed!
Have enough water. Make sure that you have enough water. A chicken can go through at least 1 gallon of water every three days. Make sure you adjust for however many chickens you have and that if you are evacuating without them, you leave enough for them to make it through.
3 feet rule. Always store food and emergency vet supplies for your chicken 3 feet above your floor. This applies more so to people who are living in a place that floods easily.
Electricity. This applies to both outdoors and indoors. Make sure everything is unplugged wherever the chickens are. Make sure that their coops are not in the way of a power line in case it falls. If indoors, make sure nothing is plugged into the walls and everything stored properly while gone.
I hope this list helped you prepare to keep your flock safe. Although it is not an exhaustive list, all of the main points have been addressed. Do you have any great tips in hurricane preparedness? Leave a comment and let us know!! Happy and Safe Hurricane season to you all!