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Help! My chicken won't come out of the coop!

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I have 7 free ranging chickens of different breeds. My little white cochin named Peep won't come out of the nest boxes. She has been free ranging all summer with the rest of the flock and now I have to get her out of the coop in the morning just to go feed. She eats a little then goes right back to the nest boxes for the rest of the day. She still lays almost everyday. Is she dying or is it that she just doesn't like Michigan weather. Is there actually truth to fair weathered birds?

Mother of a 6 year old girl, a 4 year old boy, a 2 year old boy, 2 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Aracauanas, 2 Chochin, 1 Polish Frizzle, 3 cats, 1 hamster, 6 fish and 1 husband. Phew. That's enough!
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Mother of a 6 year old girl, a 4 year old boy, a 2 year old boy, 2 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Aracauanas, 2 Chochin, 1 Polish Frizzle, 3 cats, 1 hamster, 6 fish and 1 husband. Phew. That's enough!
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post #2 of 17

If she's staying on the nest box my guess would be that you have a little broody on your hands.

If there ever comes a day when we can't be together keep me in your heart, I'll stay there forever - Winnie the Pooh
I'll never develop a thick skin.  Thick skin leads to a hard heart and I never want to be one of those people.
A slave to LF brahmas, seramas, cochins, sebrights, and call ducks.  R.I.P. Dragon, the crossbeak.  Thank you for teaching me so much about life.

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If there ever comes a day when we can't be together keep me in your heart, I'll stay there forever - Winnie the Pooh
I'll never develop a thick skin.  Thick skin leads to a hard heart and I never want to be one of those people.
A slave to LF brahmas, seramas, cochins, sebrights, and call ducks.  R.I.P. Dragon, the crossbeak.  Thank you for teaching me so much about life.

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post #3 of 17

Yup, it sure sounds like she's gone broody.   Does she puff up and growl at you when you reach toward her?  Most broodies do that but not all.

Australorps, Andalusian, Black Sex-link, Brahma, Buff Orps, EE, SS Hamburg, RIR, Red Sex-link, Silkies, Sussex, Welsummer, White Leghorns, Wyandotte and Guineas!
____________

Progressive Pics Cheat Sheet
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Australorps, Andalusian, Black Sex-link, Brahma, Buff Orps, EE, SS Hamburg, RIR, Red Sex-link, Silkies, Sussex, Welsummer, White Leghorns, Wyandotte and Guineas!
____________

Progressive Pics Cheat Sheet
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post #4 of 17

Does she spend the night in the nest boxes too?  If so, you've probably got yourself a broody!  Take the eggs away from her frequently to discourage her - unless you WANT her to sit on them.  Eventually she'll get over it.  Lots of people on BYC have advice for breaking a broody.  For us, it's just wait till it passes.  Took about 3 weeks last time.

Julie

 

We live on a small hobby farm with our 2 labs, 3 barn cats, 3 beehives and several dozen chickens. 

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Julie

 

We live on a small hobby farm with our 2 labs, 3 barn cats, 3 beehives and several dozen chickens. 

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post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 

Hey thanks folks. I'm new to all of this chicken stuff. She does puff up at me when I go to get her out of her nestbox. Broody makes so much sense! Why do they go broody? Will the other chickens follow ?

Mother of a 6 year old girl, a 4 year old boy, a 2 year old boy, 2 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Aracauanas, 2 Chochin, 1 Polish Frizzle, 3 cats, 1 hamster, 6 fish and 1 husband. Phew. That's enough!
Reply
Mother of a 6 year old girl, a 4 year old boy, a 2 year old boy, 2 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Aracauanas, 2 Chochin, 1 Polish Frizzle, 3 cats, 1 hamster, 6 fish and 1 husband. Phew. That's enough!
Reply
post #6 of 17

Chickens go broody to hatch eggs and it seems to be contagious, the other chickens might follow.  I have had a silly hen go broody; it refused to sit on eggs, it just wouldn't leave, even when I tossed it out 15 times a day.  If you want to hatch some eggs, just give her a few fertile eggs, and she'll do all the work.  I you want it to stop going broody, confine it in a small area with no nest box.  It will eventually get the picture.

post #7 of 17

Wow!  Can I sympathize with your broody hen problem!  I have 6 hens - they free range in our urban yard only at the end of each day.  So, two days ago we started finding only 2 eggs when we had been getting 5 each day.  One of the girls is still upset about getting and impacted crop last month.  One of the Buff Orpingtons has taken up residence in a nest box and growled at my 9 year old when he tried to get eggs.  Last night my husband tried to block the entrance with some cardboard stapled over the opening, but she had found a way in again this morning!  Through a 3 inch gap!  So, like you, I wonder if her broodiness is contagious.  Is she discouraging others from laying in the boxes?  We have had the lights on a timer for weeks - it comes on at 5a.m.  Do we persist in blocking her box access or do we just let it ride?hmm

post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elizabeth Ann 

Hey thanks folks. I'm new to all of this chicken stuff. She does puff up at me when I go to get her out of her nestbox. Broody makes so much sense! Why do they go broody? Will the other chickens follow ?


Ummmmm, because she's a cochin? laulaulau  Give the girl some fertile eggs, cochins make great mothers!

Breeding Welsummers and Barnevelders.

 

Having an Icelandic in the coop is like having a 2 year old in the house - they are into everything and don't follow the rules.

I have zero chicken willpower.

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Breeding Welsummers and Barnevelders.

 

Having an Icelandic in the coop is like having a 2 year old in the house - they are into everything and don't follow the rules.

I have zero chicken willpower.

Reply
post #9 of 17

Same thing with my Silkie mix. Where do I get the fertile eggs from? (no roo.)

post #10 of 17

1 of my cochins went broody . The little black hen , she wouldn't get off the nest all summer . She was loosing weight . I took eggs from her , I even locked the chicken house door all day for a week to make her eat . The moment the door was opened she was right back on the nest . I finally gave up . I put her in an isolation cage with food and water not six inches away and let her sit a clutch of eggs . She would hatch anyones eggs . I took one egg from about 7 hens , she hatched all of them . She raised the chicks . That seems to satisfy her . She finally quit setting about a month ago . I know this spring I'll have to do the same because she will never abandon her nest . She even faced down a rat snake and drove it off . The wierd thing is she corned it and pecked it to death . She's a good momma and a great snake killer . I thought chickens were afraid of snakes , not this little black hen .

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