At what point to chicks learn to go into the coop at night?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ShannonS79, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. ShannonS79

    ShannonS79 Chirping

    May 8, 2010
    So the girls ( they will be 4 weeks old on Wednesday) have been outside for about a week (shut in their coop with the light on since we did get into the 30s, yikes!) They outgrew their space in the house, were getting really dusty and if I left the top off their brooder, they kept wanting to fly out land on the wood stove!! So they needed to move out. Anyhow, it has warmed up a bit and they have been spending all day outside in the run. They can go up and down the ladder and are really enjoying the dirt. So for the past 3 nights I have let them stay out until it got almost dark and instead of going to bed in the coop, they all went to bed under the ladder. I have been putting them back in the coop and shutting the door, then letting them back out in the morning. So, when do they learn to go to bed in the coop and not in the run? Is it the repetition of being outside then being put away at night that makes them want to do it when they are older?

    Not that I don't mind getting to love on each girl as I put her to bed, but I'm just curious. Oh also, I know EVERYONE asks this, but I have 10 EEs and to my very untrained eye, the combs all look the same and are the same color. Am I delusional to think that they just might all be girls?? [​IMG] I might have to take pics and post them.

  2. MotherJean

    MotherJean Songster

    Was the light on in the coop? I started mine outside at that age. 1 week locked in coop, then turned into the run. About 1/2 hour before sunset, I turn on the light in the coop. The first night, I went out about a half hour after the sun sunk below the horizon (not really dark yet) and found the girls huddled up under the coop. I did the chicken round up, putting each on on the ramp and patting their bums from behind to make them go into the coop on their own steam. Left the light on all night because it was going down to 45 degrees. Night number two, I turned on the light like before. Checked on them about a half hour after sundown and they were still in the run. I decided to take a wait 'n see attitude rather than go through the chicken round up again. Sure enough, about an hour later, when it was truly getting dark, I went out to find all of them inside the coop [​IMG] They've done this every night since.

    Just my opinion based upon my experience, but I think that I was wrong in thinking that chickens go into the coop at sundown. Mine just don't. They go in when it's dark enough for street lights to come on. Right now in my little corner of the world, chicken bedtime is about 10:00 pm. Good thing I'm not an early to bed kinda person. BTW, my girls are now 9 weeks, fully feathered out and don't need the extra heat, and I turn off the light in the coop when I go out to close the pop door.
  3. write2caroline

    write2caroline Songster

    Jun 21, 2009
    Okay my first chicks went out to the coop at about 6 weeks old and for the first week I had to put them to bed. Then I got smart and got a $2 solar landscaping light - from wally world - the light did help them to go up the ladder after about a week. My second batch went to the coop at 4 weeks and up the ladder day two. But I had the light so it helped. My youngest chicks where hatched by my broody and she began taking them out at week one and up the ladder they went no problems but Momma Dot was showing them how.

  4. DAFox

    DAFox Songster

    Nov 7, 2009
    SW MO in Vernon Co
    I have never used a light. The longest it has taken for mine to go into the grow out coop by themselves was 10 days and the shortest was 1 day. I had about given up on the dumb-as-rocks chicks and cheered at my Einsteins! Usually it takes 4-6 days.
  5. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Crowing

    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    I was really lucky this year. Mine went into the coop at 4 1/2 weeks and were left out at 5 1/2 weeks. From the first night they have been in the coop right before dark. I have even had about 3/4s of them roosting each night, and the roosts are at least 18 inches off the floor. Good chickies..........

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