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Moved chicks outside, why won't they leave the hen house? - Page 2

post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by AshleyBickle View Post

My 8 and 10 week old chicks have been in the coop 3 days now... They won't leave the hen house unless I physically move them myself. They look out the door but never leave. I moved them twice yesterday to the run thinking well they will get thirsty and make their way inside. Nope, they won't use the ramp.. So I had to physically put all 5 of them back inside to rehydrate and yet again they will not leave the house. What gives? Are they afraid of the ramp? I added stairs to the bottom to make it less of a slant and still nothing. Will they figure it out or am I going to have to move them back n forth constantly?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by James9222 View Post
 

I was in the same situation a few weeks ago. With 17 week old pullets they wouldn't leave the coop to enter the run. 2 weeks later they are everywhere all the time. 6 week old chicks did the same thing. Took weeks to adapt. To help them along spend some time with them if possible, use treats and just hang out with them.

 

The two posts above are the perfect example of why "Free Range Eggs" at the grocery store are usually laid by hens whose tootsies have never touched the ground.  The doors of the laying houses are thrown wide open daily, but as sourland mentioned chickens hate new or unusual things and they will never leave the laying house when offered the chance, but what the hey, they did have the chance to range freely, they just failed to take the opportunity. 

Keep your chickens safe from predators, buy and wear fur. 
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post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by microchick View Post

I'm a terrible chicken mom. I was patient with our young flock for about three hours of the 'stand in the doorway and look outside' nonsense before I went into the coop and bodily ejected them like throwing somebody into the deep end of the lake to teach them how to swim.

They screamed, they thrashed about, they protested, then they had a moment of clarity where they looked around and said 'grass and bugs! Cool!' And went to work scratchin' and peckin, àll trauma forgotten.

After that I made frequent trips to the run to bring them treats and check on them. From that point on they exited and entered the coop without protest except now they think it is a cool to be outside after the sun has set. Silly birds!

I did this today also. Returned home from work around 2 only to see an empty run again. So I marched out their.. And took each chick out and set it in the run... I've been doing this 3 days but they still hasn't grasped the concept.. Well today they did!! Hip hip hurray!!! 🎉

20 minutes went by and they were all running in and out of the coop like they had been doing it the whole time. I guess they just needed a bit of encouragement.

Now for battle number two-- time to go in when it's dark.. Nope let's all just stand in the corner of the run and chirp loudly until I come save the day. 😉 hopefully they grasp this concept after a few days also.
post #13 of 17

I have some that like to chase those last bugs before bedtime.  I have to herd 3 into the coop and it's been 10 minutes since the rest of them went in for the night.  But--12 were on the roost tonight when I checked.  Don't know where the other 4 were, but those polish tend to pile up in the bedding.  I still have the heating pad out there, but only because it got dark and I couldn't see to get it out.  Other than a few fuzzy heads they are all feathered out pretty well.

post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by microchick View Post

I'm a terrible chicken mom. I was patient with our young flock for about three hours of the 'stand in the doorway and look outside' nonsense before I went into the coop and bodily ejected them like throwing somebody into the deep end of the lake to teach them how to swim.

They screamed, they thrashed about, they protested, then they had a moment of clarity where they looked around and said 'grass and bugs! Cool!' And went to work scratchin' and peckin, àll trauma forgotten.

After that I made frequent trips to the run to bring them treats and check on them. From that point on they exited and entered the coop without protest except now they think it is a cool to be outside after the sun has set. Silly birds! 

I don't think it's terrible. We've "shooed" ours out into the run a couple times (in the beginning), but at this point all I have to do is "come on chickie chickies" and all of them come running (bigs and littles). We got slammed with some nasty rainy weather and they all tried to just hang in the coop. I really need to make a bigger shelter zone in the run still.

post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by trudyg View Post

I have some that like to chase those last bugs before bedtime.  I have to herd 3 into the coop and it's been 10 minutes since the rest of them went in for the night.  But--12 were on the roost tonight when I checked.  Don't know where the other 4 were, but those polish tend to pile up in the bedding.  I still have the heating pad out there, but only because it got dark and I couldn't see to get it out.  Other than a few fuzzy heads they are all feathered out pretty well.

Three of mine are silkies, who tend to also like to pile in the bedding.. My other two are standard breeds but two weeks younger than the silkies so the silkies have recruited them to pile onto the pile of chicks at night also. Guess whatever works to stay warm.
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Three of mine are silkies, who tend to also like to pile in the bedding.. My other two are standard breeds but two weeks younger than the silkies so the silkies have recruited them to pile onto the pile of chicks at night also. Guess whatever works to stay warm. 

All my bigs huddle into a pile around the rooster on the top nesting shelf, all my littles pile around each other down in a nesting basket. I'm hoping at some point they stay up on the nesting shelf (the littles), but right now they don't stay up there even if put up at night. BUT, they have been going up the ladder on their own lately and down it (checking things out). They have definitely made progress through the last several weeks :)

post #17 of 17
Thanks guys. I don't feel like such a bad mommy anymore.😏😊

Our flock is 7 months old now and yes they are spoiled rotten. I went out tonight after dark to lock up and sure enough they came trotting out to greet me and make sure I had their bedtime treat. I have a 40 watt light in their coop set to come on at 6 and off at 7:30 so the only light was from my flashlight and the coop light. They seem to have no concept of dark at this time. Nor do they seem to fear it.

They readily go into the coop and stay there once I give them their treat but I'm wondering if the light is confusing them? The reason in running the light is to give the youngest hens a chance to lay before winter sets in. I've seen signs of one of them commencing their egg production, if not all three of them.

Anybody else running lights in your coop and if you do, how does it affect your birds?
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