My Tiny Brood of Backyard Chooks

chooks, hens or chickens?

Winter proofing my chicken coop



Living in the Auckland area of New Zealand, we don’t have really cold winters. Well at least we don’t have snow.

But at our house we have very, very strong winds. We live at the top of a hill and the wind rushes across the Kaipara Harbour, up the valley towards us and slams straight into the front of our house with all of it’s Westerly might.

Sometimes I see the chickens out the front on a windy day, struggling to keep upright against the wind. Their little feathers are blowing all around and sometimes the wind gusts send them a few quick steps in a different direction to where they were heading but they haven’t yet been blown away.

This weekend a storm struck New Zealand and along with the storm came very high winds (and rain).  I have a plastic tarpaulin covering the chicken coop to keep the rain out and as you can see, I have lots of very heavy rocks on the tarpaulin to keep it from blowing away. The rocks probably help to keep the chicken coop from blowing over as well.


As I went to bed that evening, the wind and rain hitting the front of our house was probably the worst I have heard since we moved here. I went out to the side of the house where the chicken coop is and shone a torch to make sure the coop was still there and that the tarpaulin was still on. It was but the wind in the trees beside the coop was so loud, I wondered if the chickens were scared. Probably not. I doubt they feel that kind of fear. They can’t visualise the coop blowing over and them being all tipped around inside, or one of the massive trees falling on their coop and crushing them.

The next morning it was all very quiet. The wind had gone. I rushed outside to see if the chickens were ok.

There they were, waiting patiently for me to open their coop door so they could come outside to scratch and peck. They had no idea that their plastic roofing that covers their coop had blown off in the night and was lying broken and bent all over the lawn.

Somehow it had blown out from under the stretchies that I use to tie down the roofing. The photo above was taken after I managed to piece some of the plastic roof back together. I guess that will do until the next big winds, probably in a few days time.


8 thoughts on “Winter proofing my chicken coop

  1. Slowly I’m figuring this out, chooks = chickens and stretchies = bungee cords. But, I have a hard time with the winter without snow.

  2. Winter in July, that is what I find hard to comprehend. The no snow is actually pretty attractive. Having taught with many little readers from New Zealand, for many years, the difference in wording is actually easy for me. And I have a fondness for New Zealand as well. The few people I have met from there are just lovely. If they could just shorten the flight time I would love to visit.

    But chooks or chickens, I love reading about their antics. Patti

    • Love the comment, Patti. 🙂
      I was just thinking a few weeks ago that it is about time that someone invented fast long distance flights. We seem to have stalled in our aircraft technology. 🙂

  3. Okay, no doubt that tarp’s functional, but sorry, your beautiful coop looks a little, well, how can I put this nicely….? like a homeless shelter. I hope your girls don’t take it out on you by withholding eggs. Though in my experience chooks aren’t really into aesthetics – they’re all about function over form so maybe they’ll give you double yolkers in thanks!

    • LOL. Totally agree. My aim is to at least get them a new cover that isn’t blue and doesn’t have holes. I was desperate one day when I realised I was not able to keep the girls dry in their house when the driving rain came.

  4. Your rocks look nice and big. 😉 I guess maybe I’m not quite as jealous of your view as I used to be. Best of luck weathering the winter!!!

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