A little background info; got my first chicks in June, they moved into their coop somewhere around end of July/August. They had been faithful to retiring to their coop each night as the sun went down for months. The week before Thanksgiving, we FINALLY got to move into our new house which has been under construction all summer. The new house is about 1000 feet away from the old one, and the chicken coop was moved over to its new location next to our also new horse barn. The first couple of weeks all was well, chickens settled into their new home quickly and as always retired to their coop as good chickens should each night.
The last week or two the majority of the chickens have decided my nice new horse barn is a much better place to roost in during the day and at night. Only 2 out of the 10 chickens now use their coop at night, and as the rest are roosed in the high rafters of the horse barn, it isn't too easy to try to get them down to get them in their coop each night. Of course their coop would be safer for them at night, as they get locked up tight and safe from predators. The horse barn has plenty of entry points that just about any predator that wanted to could enter. Not to mention they are pooping all over my nice new horse barn which is definately not going over well with either myself or my husband.
How do I convince the chickens they need to roost in their coop and not my barn? HELP! Contemplating building a run to keep them penned up and out of the barn, but would hate to do that as they enjoy free ranging all day. And with all the snow right now I don't think it would be too easy to build this time of year.
Thanks in advance for your suggestions!