Keep poultry in the coop during Bonfire Night
QI’m 10 years old and I have just bought four chickens. I look after them all by myself. They are very healthy and happy, but I’m worried about Bonfire Night. My friend’s dog goes mad when he hears fireworks and he lives in the house. I think my chickens will be terrified out in the garden. Should I bring them indoors?
AAnne Perdeaux says: Chickens don’t like change and are best left in their own coop where they feel safe. Shut them in before the fireworks start and they will probably sleep through it all. Although chickens don’t usually seem worried by firework noises, bright lights may disturb them if their coop has a window. You could cover this with a cloth or blanket if there are fireworks and bonfires close by. Just in case, add some unpasteurised apple cider vinegar to the chickens’ drinking water during firework week (about 20ml vinegar per litre of water in a plastic drinker). This will help them to recover from any stress they might feel. Check around the garden for any firework remains before letting the chickens out in the morning — they may be attracted by the brightly coloured paper. If you are having a bonfire yourself, make sure that all your chickens are in their house before lighting it, and keep them away from the hot ashes the next day.
Fireworks may be fun for humans, but chickens and other animals can find them frightening and stressful
Bright lights may disturb chickens if their coop has a window