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leaving the coop to roost at night

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

i have a 2 yr old Silver Wyandotte (sp?) who all of a sudden will not go into the coop at night.  Any ideas why or any help   never had this happen in my 15 yrs of backyard chickens.  Thanks Susan Wiles-Dublin-CA

post #2 of 4

My two girls (RIR and Easter Egger) were on the top of their coop trying to sleep last night when I went to go close them in for the night. They did NOT want to go in their coop. I grabbed a flashlight and checked every nook and cranny just in case a rat or something was hiding in there but nada. Maybe they just wanted to enjoy the cool air? 

I eventually coaxed them into the coop for the night and locked up since we have coons and other animals prowling around at night and my coonhound sleeps indoors all night so he's not much for protecting them during the night. 

I'm interested in hearing other's responses!

post #3 of 4
A couple of thoughts, bullying by other hens, harassment from a rooster, mites, rats or mice, snakes, heat, and my hens are currently molting which causes all kinds of goofy behavior because they are uncomfortable. A coop is suppose to be a safe place to roost so for some reason they are not feeling safe. Hope you can figure it out or it passes.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
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Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #4 of 4

Yes, I agree that conflicts at roosting time is likely the reason why chickens suddenly refuse to go into the coop, or will hang out in the run until it gets dark, and then go in at the last minute.

 

I urge you to quietly observe roosting time. Watch the dynamics. It can be quite noisy and raucous even if there isn't any obvious bullying. Sometimes it's simply too much for a shy or timid hen, especially of she's very young.

 

I usually gently gather up the timid one and carry her into the coop and choose a quiet spot for her to roost. I do that for a few nights until she discovers she's safe and she does it on her own.

 

If there's a particular bully that's the problem, I'll resort to discipline, intervening in the aggressive behavior when it occurs. Many times, if you interrupt it, it will eventually stop.

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