8 week old now what?


6 Years
Apr 11, 2013
Riverside, CA (Woodcrest)
My 8 chicks are 8 weeks old, when should I put in there nesting boxes. Also there Chicken Mansion in 8x8x7 it has 2 windows and a door on the front side and there door to the run is on the east side. How many roosting bars should I put in the coop and at what hieghts and should I put any roosting bars in there run. There run is 10 x 20.
They won't start laying for awhile so nesting boxes aren't really needed. As far as the roosts go I've read that you need like 2ft of roost per bird.

I read 1' of roost each but more is never a bad thing. I put up a single, long roost to discourage squabbling over position. As if. They'll squabble over position no matter what. I'm changing it soon to two roosts at the same height and with a couple of separators so the littles I'm integrating will (hopefully!) be able to find somewhere to call their own.

Nest boxes should be lower than the roost and I'd make sure they are installed by 15 weeks so they have a little time to explore those before using them. Putting them in sooner won't hurt as long as they don't sleep in them.

The roost height is more about physical ability and ease of getting up and down than anything. The higher the roost, the more unimpeded distance it takes to glide down. I put the roost at 3' for large fowl and they have a place to hop to get up and down since I didn't have lots of glide room. It works.
Oh, and yes on the run roost. Mine use theirs for a nice spot to preen and relax. When I integrated last time, that was where the newbies went to escape the hens for a bit. Not sure why it works to be out of the line of sight but it does.
As has been mentioned, make sure your roosts are higher then the nest boxes since they like to roost on the tallest spot. They don't need their nesting boxes just yet, but you can still put them in. I'd try to discourage them sleeping in them though. They do really enjoy a roosting area in their run too!
Thanks everybody, I changed my roost from 1 long one to a 3 teared one. the bars are at 12", 28" and 44" or at least that was the spacing when I built it but when I installed it the highest is more like 37" with the angle. I also finished the total enclosure of there run today, now I will add some outdoor roosts. My girls love to take dust baths, but today I knocked over there outside water while working and it made some mud. The girls went right to it and had a grand old time scratching and doing something like sitting but shaking and digging. It sure looked they were enjoying themselves! I read in the chicken wispers guide to raising chickens that they might start laying between 20 to 24 weeks...end of July...Yeah the first dozen will be about a 800 dozen after building them there house. My wife says I went over board. LOL

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