Another cold night..... How to get the chicks in the coop?

newchicktochicks33

Chirping
8 Years
Dec 8, 2011
106
0
89
Milwaukie, OR
The past couple nights here have been cold, a mix between snow and rain, and very very windy. I have 3 orpingtons that are about 3 and a half months old and they have been with the big chickens for the past month or so but they have always slept in their own dog run and big rubbermaid tub at night and are let out in the morning. But on Saturday I got 2 new rabbits and I put their hutch in the dog run and the rabbits will be using the dog run from now on to run around in so I decided to kick to baby chicks out of the dog run and they need to start sleeping in the big chicken coop. The first night they were all just waiting outside of the dog run so we caught them and put them in the coop. The next couple nights were not that easy! They all hid underneath the coop when it got dark and stayed there, so in the pitch dark and cold I have had to use a stick and get them out from underneath there and flash one light at the door and one at the steps to try to herd them in there, that took about 30 mins total. :/ so last night I was gone and I had my brother put them in by himself... I got home this morning and he told me that he couldn't get them in, and we tried tonight and still we could not get them in. Any advice on how to get them to go in the coop with the big chickens? Any advice helps!
Thank you!

P.S. Sorry for writing so much!
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TheSpiceGirls

Crowing
9 Years
Oct 6, 2010
2,566
332
271
Bay Area, CA
Wow, that's a tough one. I know they are creatures of habit and change in their routine can be tough. You don't think the adult hens are bullying them in the coop or keeping them from roosting? You may want to go out at dusk when they go to bed and see what goes on and if you can encourage them to go in w/ the big hens. And make sure they are not getting bullied.

I have a Jersey Giant who's a big bully and likes to peck at and knock the other hens off the roosting bar.
 

newchicktochicks33

Chirping
8 Years
Dec 8, 2011
106
0
89
Milwaukie, OR
Thank you both! I dont really know if they get bullied or not, we do have a security camera in the coop, maybe I should turn that on and see whats going on. They do not roost yet so far we have just put them underneath the nesting boxes where none of the big girls are. I dont know if they can get on the roost yet. I will see how tomorrow night goes, I will probably go out and just watch them but I think I am also going to put chicken wire all around the bottom of the coop so they cant get under there but I am scared if I do they will go somewhere else where I cant find them!?!? Thanks again!
 

Minniechickmama

Senora Pollo Loco
10 Years
Sep 4, 2009
7,135
703
391
Minnesota
If you can, do put the wire around the bottom of the coop so they can't get under it. I bought a chicken hook for grabbing mine from under things and catching them in general. But, you will have to go out and put them in for a few nights at dusk until they figure out that is where they are supposed to go. Most of them will figure it out after about 3 days. I have had the same problem when I move coops/tractors around, even if it is just 10 feet away, they don't know where to go. Even birds who get bullied will figure out where "indoors" is when it gets cold. Just be glad you don't have turkeys to have to put away EVERY night because they would rather find the highest thing to roost on than go in their enclosed pen with it is zero degrees and the wind is blowing.
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Desirai

Songster
8 Years
Oct 12, 2011
831
75
151
Alabama
I don't have any chickens, but from what I've read on the forum, a lot of people will lock their new chicks in the coop for a few days so that they understand that's their new home.
Then it's like a lightbulb and they're all "Oooohh.... this is where I'm supposed to sleep."

Haha :)
 

urban escapee

Songster
8 Years
Jul 14, 2011
282
4
101
Alvin, TX
We are having the same issue but dont have anything for the little ones to get under. We wait until dark and the little ones are all puddled together on the ground and so sleepy thats its easy to catch them up. What is so cute is that they keep moving closer and closer to the pop door, hoping that tonight they actually go through it.
 

newchicktochicks33

Chirping
8 Years
Dec 8, 2011
106
0
89
Milwaukie, OR
Thanks again! Yes I know how turkeys our they use to fly up on our roof. haha the neighbors got a kick out of that! :D I have considered the hook but im not quite sure. I dont know how I would lock them in the coop, because the big girls go in and out of the coop all day. The chicks go into the coop through out the day for food and water but for some reason not at night. My chicks all curl up together too! And make little chirpy noises. I hope your and mine figure it out soon. :)
 

newchicktochicks33

Chirping
8 Years
Dec 8, 2011
106
0
89
Milwaukie, OR
I went out when most of the big girls were in and I herded them in and my brother kept them in there until I got the rest of the birds to go inside. So now my babies will be warm tonight. I guess for the next couple night that is what im going to have to do until they learn.
 

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