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How to entertain chickens in coop?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

After multiple predators sightings (coyote and possible bobcat) my husband has declaered that the chickens can no longer be let out and need to stay in the coop. They are used to being out everyday, I think it makes them happy chickens and I like to see them running around the place. What are some things that I can do to keep them entertained? They get diffrent food treats everyday that I just put in a bowl for them. I want to keep them happy and don't want them to become bored! Thanks in adavance!

post #2 of 8

  That ain't gonna happen cooped up all day.Tell you husband to make them a safe run. They need time to play, or at least peck the dirt.

post #3 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ole rooster View Post

  That ain't gonna happen cooped up all day.Tell you husband to make them a safe run. They need time to play, or at least peck the dirt.



I agree. They need to be able to go outside. What I did when I wasn't able to get a run built was check craigslist for chain link dog kennels. I found a 10x10x6 for $100 and bought the shade cover that goes on it from Lowe's. It's not all that big, but I'm fortunate enough to be a stay at home mom, although my son is in High School. My chickens have become my kids! I let them out several times a day outside of the chain link kennel while I'm outside only, because of hawks. They don't wander off very far and usually go back after about an hour. I shut the gate so they can play inside the kennel until I go back outside. I know that what I've got isn't predator proof from the ground, as the chain link is too big, but I'm covered from air attacks. When the sun starts going down, I go outside and make sure everyone is accounted for and shut the doors. It's not an ideal situation, right now but it's a whole lot better than being shut in all the time. If there's absolutely nothing you can do at the moment, you can always hang a head of cabbage in the coop and let them play with that. But that won't last long, I'm afraid.

post #4 of 8

If they were games, or even not, then I would suggest challenge them in respect to getting at food items.  Hopefully your coop has some volume and height so you can place elevated roost and platforms they have to jump, flutter or fly in order to reach.  Place different types of food at each location.  Bury some grain under hay, make it so they have to jump up for greens.

Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it.
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Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it.
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post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 

Their coop is inside a 6x12 dog kennel that is buried a foot into the ground and surronded with chicken wire and I have chicken wire over the top. My husband is saying I can't let them out of the kennel enclousure any longer. They have a area to scratch and walk and can climb ontop and underneath the coop becuase it is about 18 inches off the ground. Would diffrent ground coverings be entertaining for them?

 

 

post #6 of 8

Lets start with this,how many chickens do you have? That is really not a lot of space.  Chicken wire is good for one thing keeping in chickens. Around the run there should be hardware cloth at least the bottom 12/18 inches or at least garden fencing. The more space the better.

"The difference between being involved and being committed is the same as the difference between eggs and bacon. The chicken is involved. But the pig is committed"  Anonymous

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"The difference between being involved and being committed is the same as the difference between eggs and bacon. The chicken is involved. But the pig is committed"  Anonymous

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post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 

I have two hens, my rooster (my pic) got ate by something. I am going to get another rooster, I just haven't found one that I want to bring into the family yet. The coop is one I purchased from Atwood's and has a roost that goes all the way across it and a removable pan underneath the wire that captures their droppings.

post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by sikesjj View Post

I have two hens, my rooster (my pic) got ate by something. I am going to get another rooster, I just haven't found one that I want to bring into the family yet. The coop is one I purchased from Atwood's and has a roost that goes all the way across it and a removable pan underneath the wire that captures their droppings.



Six by twelve should enough area for three birds.  Make some additional structures they can clamber about on.  I am guessing they have less than four feet of ceiling?

 

Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it.
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Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it.
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