ARGH! Need HELP getting chicks in coop at night!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by littlemissjellyfish, Jul 26, 2010.

  1. littlemissjellyfish

    littlemissjellyfish Chirping

    Jun 16, 2010
    My chicks are 7 weeks old today and have been in the coop for 1 week. In the morning they easily go from coop to chicken tractor, but I can't for the life of me get them into the coop at night! All hell breaks loose and my kids and I have to race around the yard to try and catch them. Lately, my son has been crawling into the chicken tractor and hands them out to me one by one. Both are VERY time consuming and makes me want to pull my hair out! I put them into the coop through the chicken door to encourage them, but it hasn't sunk in yet! Any helpful hints would be greatly appreciated!
  2. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

    Oct 18, 2009
    Quote:We kept our chickens IN the coop and run area for at least a week before letting them out so they became clear as to where home base was. Never had a problem with getting them to go in.
    Are you letting it get dark outside before you start rounding them up? If not, maybe a little scratch enticement would help?
    I've read people suggest using a night light in the coop and that will help them find their way back at dusk.
    I'd start with the mini-quarrantine first though.
  3. Mark & Nique

    Mark & Nique Chirping

    Jun 20, 2010
    South Carolina
    What a coincidence -- our chicks were yet to make the climb into their nesting/night area (we have a tractor), and they recently turned 2 months old.

    I decided that they would go up when things cooled off -- we live in SC w/temperatures over 100 of late. But this evening, we had a fantastic and wonderful thunderstorm. When my wife check on the chicks during a break in the thunder and lightning, she called out for me.

    Guess who decided to climb the ladder? Yep. They were all sitting up in their nesting space! [​IMG] Sometime they need a little help from above!
  4. ams3651

    ams3651 Songster

    Jan 23, 2008
    NE PA
    I kept mine inside till they were 2-3 months old so they knew where to sleep at night. My youngsters now follow the adults in for the most part but they still like to stay out longer. Treats usually work well to get them inside and if all else fails i wait till the sun starts to go down and they will go inside on their own. But i think the easiest way to teach them is to leave them locked inside for a week or so.
  5. jeremy

    jeremy CA Royal Blues

    Mar 23, 2008
    Oakland, CA
    Use a broom. [​IMG]
  6. sunflowerenvy

    sunflowerenvy Songster

    Apr 4, 2010
    south/west tn
    also how many chickens do u have? how big is your coop?
    if your coop size is to small than it will be to hot in there for them remember 4 ft /standard bird or 2ft/batman size bird. do u have there feeder in there or not . u might want to throw some foods on the ramp and in the coop. and start bring them in about 45 minutes before dusk and in the morning feed them inside before let them out.
  7. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Songster

    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    Treats, treats, and more treats. A week in the coop should have been enough for the youngsters to get the idea. I've found that I need to keep them locked in for two weeks if I move older birds to a new coop, but birds that haven't lived anywhere else outside usually catch on quicker. Do they go in and out of the coop during the day? It sure sounds like there is something about the pop door that is freaking them out a bit, maybe you have a ramp? Anyhow, I'd start feeding them their treats inside the coop, make a little trail of treats thru the door and eventually they'll figure out that it's a good place to go.
  8. littlemissjellyfish

    littlemissjellyfish Chirping

    Jun 16, 2010
    @ sunflowerenvy:
    I have 12 chickens. My coop is 8x6 (not including nest boxes which are closed up!) and I don't have an outdoor run built yet. Which is why I use the tractor during the day. I have a large feeder in the coop and I have a small feeder in the tractor. Maybe if I don't put the small feeder in the tractor during the day? I work 7p-7a 3 days a week. I have a 2 hour commute, so I need to put them in around 5pm on the nights I work. It isn't remotely close to being dark out. I think this is definitely part of my problem!

    @ Kittymomma:
    They weren't happy being in the coop for 5 days! *chuckle* When I am home I let them free range, but if I am out and about I put them in the Chicken Tractor. They don't use the chicken door except when I put them out and take them in.

    Looks like I'll be buying scratch and leaving them a little trail!

    @ urbanfarmboi:
    *laughing* Oh! I've done that! Getting 12 chickens out of a Rosa Rugosa bush is dangerous work without a broom!

    Thanks for the advice everyone! I'll give it a go!
  9. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
  10. littlemissjellyfish

    littlemissjellyfish Chirping

    Jun 16, 2010
    Quote:THANK YOU! Wow! I didn't know chickens had poor low light vision! Guess I'll invest in some solar lights so they can see their way in the dark....and see the path of treats!

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