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What time do you let your chickens out?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

Planning ahead, how early in the morning should the chickens go out? As soon as it starts getting light? Maybe I'll have the hens who don't mind sleeping in....wink

Chicks are coming 6/2!!

Happy chick mama to 2 EEs, 2 Buff Brahmas and 2 Black Australorps
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Happy chick mama to 2 EEs, 2 Buff Brahmas and 2 Black Australorps
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post #2 of 27

I like how you think...  Our chickens used to go out at first light, in the winter that was okay.  It was more of a chore getting them out at first light in the summertime, getting up so much earlier.  This is our second year and they seem to like having a little more time in the house, at least that's what they're getting, and they seem just fine.  I know I like it better.  We have to close the hen-door at night, as we live in the woods and brushy area that harbors lots of nasty chicken eaters.  If we lived in a more open area, I'd leave the hen-door open since they go out into a fully enclosed run.  Then after it is fully light and I have had a chance to check the area, I let them out to range freely for most of the day.

post #3 of 27

I let mine out when I wake up and they run around their run all day. Then they get put back when I remember at night. Usually around 8:00. Daylight doesn't make me wake up earlier in the summer.

post #4 of 27

Mine want to go out somewhere between dawn and sunrise.

Worry is interest paid on trouble before it comes due.

9 hatchery and mutt hens

BYC Troubleshooting article -- click here

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Worry is interest paid on trouble before it comes due.

9 hatchery and mutt hens

BYC Troubleshooting article -- click here

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post #5 of 27

We open our pop door at 6:30am but I don't think there are any hard and fast rules about it.   We have a huge coop and could easily leave them in longer if we wanted to but 6:30 is when we start horse and other barn chores so it works for us.   We don't let them out to free range until after 10:30am, because we like them to lay their eggs first.  They'll usually go back in to lay but every now and then they'll lay under a shrub or evergreen tree, if we let them free range too early.  The chickens put themselves to bed around 8:00 at this time of year, well before dark, and we lock them in shortly thereafter. 

Our timing changes according to the season.  Generally, we don't open the pop door until first light.

post #6 of 27

Since I'm already up,  I open the door around 5-6 am.  I love watching them come out.  I have the early birds who march out at first light, and I have the sleepy heads who meander about as if they need a cup of coffee to get going.  Then there are the diehards who keep their head tucked under their wing until they are the last in the coop.

What is really entertaining is how they act once they get moving.  I have the martial arts experts who dodge and dart about like little ninjas.  The long distance runners warm up with few laps around the chicken yard.  Morse immediately pecks out her secret code.  Then there are the super chickens who stand up straight and flap their wings until the grass bends over.  One or two practice chicken yoga with eyes half closed.  Then as soon as the sun hits the yard its sun bathing time, and they all collapse in total harmony.

Married to the old dude, 0 human kids, 2 horses, 4 cockatiels, 2 parakeets,  1 Blue Front Amazon, 1 Yellow Head Amazon, 4 cockatiels, two parakeets, 1 eccentric peacock, 1 gsd, 1 pet terrapin, 1 Blue Copper Maran rooster, and 10 world famous Jersey Giants! New to the group is 3 Black Marans  chicks and one unidentified chick.

 

 

Stan the Man will be missed.

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Married to the old dude, 0 human kids, 2 horses, 4 cockatiels, 2 parakeets,  1 Blue Front Amazon, 1 Yellow Head Amazon, 4 cockatiels, two parakeets, 1 eccentric peacock, 1 gsd, 1 pet terrapin, 1 Blue Copper Maran rooster, and 10 world famous Jersey Giants! New to the group is 3 Black Marans  chicks and one unidentified chick.

 

 

Stan the Man will be missed.

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post #7 of 27

I have been getting up at 6:30am to let the girls out they hear me coming and jump off the perch and line up ready to come out.
The four marans are all very energetic in the morning and have a stretch and run around the warrens walk out half asleep and there's one that doesn't come out straight away I think 6:30am is too early for her she looks at the others then tucks her head back under her wing for a while longer.

I let them take themselves off to bed the warrens go well before dark but the marans are out until the very last light I pop up refresh the water for the night and tuck them in. Lol lock them in should i say.

smile

I Love My Animals
3 Copper Black Maran's Gertie, Faith and Margo and 3 Warrens Sugar, Dolly, pippa and  1 large blue named blue and 1 spotty hen called Lucy 1 Cat Smudge, 1 Basset Hound Mildred and 6 fish called fish lol.

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I Love My Animals
3 Copper Black Maran's Gertie, Faith and Margo and 3 Warrens Sugar, Dolly, pippa and  1 large blue named blue and 1 spotty hen called Lucy 1 Cat Smudge, 1 Basset Hound Mildred and 6 fish called fish lol.

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post #8 of 27

I let mine out when I take the dog out in the morning - usually between 7-8 am.  I close up the coop at night when I take the dog out before bed - usually between 9-10 pm.  At bedtime, they are already up in the coop and sleeping, but I always close the door.

post #9 of 27

I set the timer on the automatic door opener to about 1/2 hour after sunrise, and program it to close about 1/2 hour after completely dark.  It seems that most of the hens go out immediatly after the door open for an hour or so, then wander back to the coop the begin their business of egg-laying.  This seems to work pretty well for me!tongue

Chickens.... a "cheep" form of entertainment!
http://www.GraffTek.com
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Chickens.... a "cheep" form of entertainment!
http://www.GraffTek.com
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post #10 of 27

In the summer I rarely close their door.  Their run is like Fort Knox so I'm okay with leaving it open alll night.  In the summer some of girls prefer to sleep outside.  In the winter it gets opened before I leave for work unless the weather is miserable.  Looking forward to our new run... it will be better protected for winter outside time.

Wife to 1, Mom to 2... and crazy over my 4 Silkies and 3 Polish Bantams, 2 Seramas, 2 Dogs, and 3 fish... and my hubby wonders why he feels that stabbing pain in the middle of his forehead...
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Wife to 1, Mom to 2... and crazy over my 4 Silkies and 3 Polish Bantams, 2 Seramas, 2 Dogs, and 3 fish... and my hubby wonders why he feels that stabbing pain in the middle of his forehead...
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