Advice needed, do chickens storm the door?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by superchemicalgirl, May 29, 2010.

  1. superchemicalgirl

    superchemicalgirl HEN PECKED

    Jan 10, 2010
    Vacationland, Maine
    My babies were 6 weeks old yesterday. The coop is done except for some cosmetic stuff (another coat of paint and trim put up). The babies are still in my basement in 2 big boxes which they are quickly outgrowing. They figured out about 3 weeks ago how to escape from the box and trying to keep up with the poo all over my basement is daunting and dirty.

    I was going to move the babies outside last week to their coop but had a couple of delays due to the fence guy. He promised me it would be done by this afternoon. Now I just received a call from him saying he "forgot" it was a holiday weekend and won't be coming back until Tuesday now.

    Getting on to my question:

    I know the chicks should be locked in the coop for a few days to "imprint" this as their new home. However, I need to go in and out to feed them and check on them. Should I wait until the fence is up as insurance so if they do storm the people door and escape they can be easily contained and caught? Or will they be freaked out in their new place for a few days that I won't have problems with escapees?

    Would you move them out today (and spend the rest of the day finally scrubbing the basement!) or wait until the fence is up?

  2. bfrancis

    bfrancis Songster

    Mar 30, 2010
    Okmulgee Co, Oklahoma
    I would move'em. Mine were put into their coop before the run was up. I did have an interior door, with also the exterior door. But, on the interior door I put a scrape piece of plywood across the inside of the door and attached it with screws for easy removal. The piece was 8" high and 30" long. this is low enough to step over an just high enough to slow down any chicks that might want to explore without permission; that way a quick hand movement down you can stop any chicks.

    I think the extra space for the chicks and out of your basement is something that both parties will like!

    Good luck.
  3. Chook-A-Holic

    Chook-A-Holic Songster

    Oct 5, 2009
    Central, N.C.
    I would get them outside also. As bfrancis suggested, put something a the bottom of the door opening to prevent escapees. My brooder/coop also has two doors. The exterior door leads into a 3x8 foyer area where I keep the feed and other supplies. When I go into the coop I close the exterior door before opening the interior door where the birds are to prevent them from escaping to outside. My exterior wall is solid with ventilation, a door and a window. My interior wall is hardware cloth from floor to ceiling with a hardware cloth covered door. Makes it nice on days that I need to open the exterior door and windows while still protecting the birds from predators.
  4. superchemicalgirl

    superchemicalgirl HEN PECKED

    Jan 10, 2010
    Vacationland, Maine
    Thanks! Will attempt to get them outside today.
  5. GotChicken?

    GotChicken? Songster

    Jan 14, 2010
    The Thumb, MI
    I just moved my last batch of chicks into the coop last week. I noticed that even after 2-3 days of confinement, it still took each group of chicks a couple extra days before they would venture outside for any length of time. Now they run around the yard like maniacs:lol:. So don't worry about being bum rushed - yet.
  6. superchemicalgirl

    superchemicalgirl HEN PECKED

    Jan 10, 2010
    Vacationland, Maine
    I got them into the coop around 1700 today. Except a few brave ones they are currently all in the furthest back corner in a chicken pile. I moved a couple to roosts and will go out in a few minutes to check on them again, but you guys were all right, there is no gang of chickens waiting to assault me and escape for greener pastures when I open the door.
    ... for now [​IMG]

    Now if only I can stop worrying that there's a predator out there with coop-breaking skills. And get some sleep tonight.
  7. CityChook

    CityChook Songster

    Apr 9, 2008
    Minneapolis, MN
    My Coop
    Just for the record...

    I only allow my chickens to exit the coop via the pop door. Never the human door. If I let them outside to free range, it's through the pop door first then the run door. That way they don't storm the human door when I open it.

    They will totally head butt the pop door in the morning when I'm opening it up. They are so impatient!

    I don't have time to chase chickens through the back yard in the morning, therefore I have trained them that they are not allowed to leave through the human door. It works - they leave that door alone, which makes it substantially easier when I'm out there doing chicken chores.

  8. illegal avian

    illegal avian Cooped up

    Apr 21, 2010
    Third World, Texas
    Being stampeded by a flock of chickens would make for a most embarrassing obituary... chances are you would never live it down! [​IMG]
  9. jamieg

    jamieg In the Brooder

    Apr 20, 2010
    Chili, Wisconsin
    I just had Suzie the chicken run out the human door on our coop on Saturday. Ended up chasing her quite a while until I was able to chase her back into the chicken run. I am afraid of that happening again. I might try putting some chicken wire up by the human door? Good luck!

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