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My leghorn keeps sleeping outside

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Recently, my flock of nine 33 month old hens began their molting which they have done before. My littlest leghorn, who I effectionantly call "Runty", has lost a lot of feathers, which is normal. However, when I go down to feed my flock in the evenings, Runty stays outside while all of her sisters have gone in their coop to sleep. She perches on a log placed on a support beam about three feet off the ground in the run and closes her eyes to sleep. When I see this, I move her inside the coop and put her in a nest box with her sisters. This has continued for a week or so.I have never seen this before and I am growing kind of worried. What should I do?

post #2 of 6

She may be stressed by the others. Is she low on the pecking order? Is there plenty of room in the coop for the number of chickens you have? Plenty of roosting space?

 

I will let you know, I recently had two cockerels move to the pine tree outside the coop. They felt pressured because I have so many young cockerels and decided to move to their own "bachelor pad." I free range, and they go about 20ft up in the tree at night. Not much I can do about their decision (other than removing some of the cockerels, which is a work in progress). Anyhow, long story short is that after about a month of this, it finally caught up to them when a fox or coyote was waiting for them when they came down from the tree Sunday. I lost both of them. Luckily it was before I let the whole flock out, as I could have lost a more valuable pullet or hen.

 

This starts winter lockdown for us, I was hoping to make it through November with the warm weather we have had!

 

Get that girl happy to be inside, it's getting colder out!

We ride and never worry about the fall

I guess that's just the cowboy in us all

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We ride and never worry about the fall

I guess that's just the cowboy in us all

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post #3 of 6

Don't put her in a nest box. Place her on the roost until she goes in on her own.

 

Do your birds sleep in the nest boxes?

NPIP 43-813

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”                  Mark Twain

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NPIP 43-813

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”                  Mark Twain

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post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 

To answer MistyMountain and ChickenCanoes questions, my flock has no particular pecking order or hierarchy.  However, some of my birds are tougher and more aggressive than others and Runty, despite her size, is one of the tough ones. My coop has plenty of space and four 18''x18'' nest boxes

post #5 of 6
All flocks have a pecking order, you are just not seeing it, your hen is hiding because molting is uncomfortable and they don't like being touched, and they can act like they are unwell, she should get better after all her feathers come in.
Edited by oldhenlikesdogs - 11/11/15 at 5:45pm
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 #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldhenlikesdogs View Post

All flocks have a pecking order, you are just not seeing it, your hen is hiding because molting is uncomfortable and they don't like being touched, and they can act like they are unwell, she should get better after all her feathers come in.


Agree with this.

 

Any group of animals has a hierarchy. Even humans, even though we don't always like to admit it.

Rachel BB

Stem cell transplant from unrelated donor in Feb 2015. Thank you to all my friends here on BYC for all your support during my treatment and ongoing recovery!

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Rachel BB

Stem cell transplant from unrelated donor in Feb 2015. Thank you to all my friends here on BYC for all your support during my treatment and ongoing recovery!

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