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Country Discussion Topics
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New Chickens Won't Come In
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Karen    Posted 11-18-2001 at 13:55:20       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I have 7 week old chicks that have been in the coop now for a week. They love to stay in the chicken run most of the day; however, they also seem to want to stay out there all night too. I can't get them to go into the coop at night and it is getting cold! Thier food and water are inside and come and go during the day. They are all huddled together when it gets dark and seem to be cold but won't go in the coop. I have even tried turning on the heat lamp to draw them in but to no avail. They have plenty of room in the coop (in fact for the 12 chicks I have it is a mansion!) It is getting in the low 20's and was wondering if they will be okay out all night or do I have to keep crawling in to pick up each one and bring them in at night. Preditors aren't a problem since they have a wonderful tight run just worried the little guys will get sick. Thanks for any advice or ideas.

Wingnut    Posted 11-22-2001 at 19:20:36       [Reply]  [Send Email]
When we raised new chicks ourselves, we always left them in the coop day and night until they started laying. Seems by that time they've figured out that that's their "bedroom." But when you let the hens raise them, they learn from her.

The advice here makes sense, but if putting them in each night doesn't work, maybe leave them shut inside for a few days. If still no luck, leave 'em in for a week or two.

Good luck!

Mary    Posted 08-31-2003 at 18:57:06       [Reply]  [No Email]
If the coop has a light in it the chickens will go in. They don't like to go into a dark coop.

Tom A    Posted 11-19-2001 at 06:31:32       [Reply]  [Send Email]

Though our flock always goes in at night, we've had a few individuals that act like yours... almost seem to get 'confused' as the sun goes down.

My wife's solution seems to work: she will round up the stragglers (usually with my help) and physically put them in the coop and close the door. Then the next day, she lets them out again. Hard work, especially if the hens haven't been hand-raised (most of hers come to her like pets) Couple of days like that and even the most stubborn/stupid hen gets the idea and goes in on her own.

Good luck!

Gary    Posted 11-18-2001 at 20:44:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
turn a light on in the coop and they will come in. With our layers we always had a light on at night to increase egg production.

Karen    Posted 11-19-2001 at 04:35:37       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Yep, tried that -- they just won't come in. I just can't figure it out!

F14    Posted 11-18-2001 at 16:53:40       [Reply]  [No Email]
Well, that's a new one. I've had a few that would roost anywhere BUT in the coop, but they all did their dangedest to get up high somewheres.

How do they get in and out of the coop? Is there a ramp for them? Les's point about roosts is good too.

If they're all huddled up, and it's dark, you can usually just pick 'em up and chuck 'em in the house. I usually have to do that for a few when I first start letting my meat birds out, but after a week or so, they catch on. Even then, there's usually a couple of diehards that won't go in until it's plumb dark.

I find it hard to believe there's anything stupider than hybrid meat birds...":^)

Les...fortunate    Posted 11-18-2001 at 16:31:40       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Them must be some kinda stupid chickens. Has all the brains been bred out of 'em or what???
Do you have roosts for 'em inside the house or do they just sit on the floor? What about outside? Maybe if you put 'em where you want 'em after dark and they wake up there, they'll get with the program. Or just leave 'em shut in for a few days and see if that changes their habits.

Karen    Posted 11-18-2001 at 17:51:18       [Reply]  [Send Email]
They have a ramp that goes to the outside run. They also have roosts. One about 1 1/2 ft. off the floor, one at 2 1/2 ft and one at 3 1/2 ft. They are Buff Orpingtons, Aracanas, and Silver Wyandottes. The run is enclosed top and bottom and only 4 ft high so I can to reach through the opening into the run or go through the trap door on the top of the run and crawl through to get them. It is beginning to be a pain in the neck! I always thought when it gets dark they go inside!

China-cat    Posted 09-01-2003 at 14:38:22       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Well I have 23 Buff Orpingtons and all but one
will roost in a big pine tree next to the coop...
we tried to carry them in for weeks and then it
just got to be to much... so there they stay in
that tree.. we now call it their club house.. I
haven't tried the light thing yet, but will
because it is getting cold here.. and they are
getting close to laying their first eggs. It has
been a few years anyone have any new ideas
to get them in?????

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