We really wanted some chickens and debated on whether to build a coop or drag one of the old sheds over from the old farm house site to use. Of course building one would probably be a great idea but having to go to town to find the lumber when we already had some good sheds we could use just seemed a wast of time and resources. The only problem we weren't too sure about was if the chickens would be able to handle the cold. We had just been through one of the coldest winters I had ever experienced and I was worried that maybe it was too cold up here for anything to survive without heat in the winter. But how did our ancestors do it? They lived here in log huts with mud chinking and they survived along with all their stock.
I remember way back when I was little how my mother who lived off the grid without power for many years while I was growing up would order new spring chicks and they would come in the mail. We would pick them up from the post office all peeping and soft. They would spend the first week or so on the open door of the wood cook stove and then slowly be moved to cooler spots until ready to go outside.
All we could really do was try it and see what happened. There was no way we would be able to put a heat lamp in the chicken coop, living off the grid means you don't have enough power for heat lamps. So we might have to do just like they did in "the olden days" in order to keep them warm. The first step of course was getting a coop ready, then we could decide on which breed of chickens would be most suited to this area.
We finally choose the round, flat topped gain bin as it was in very good shape. Put in a door and a fence and there you have it! A coop ready and waiting for chickens. That wasn't so bad. Of course later on we would put a finish on it and a small door for the chickens but at least we had a start. Now where was I going to get my chickens from?