Babies Roosting

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by pawsfoot, Aug 15, 2014.

  1. pawsfoot

    pawsfoot Out Of The Brooder

    11
    1
    24
    Aug 3, 2014
    So my little girls are just a couple days over 2 weeks old now, and about 3 days ago my husband and I added a roosting pole to their brooder. At first they just would jump up on it and sit for a second and then sleep on the floor of the brooder, but today I witnessed them napping on it. However, they kind of fall asleep and almost fall off of it. I didn't know if they are still just uncoordinated or whether it is too thin for them to roost on. It is a wooden dowel like object that is maybe 1 inch in diameter. All 4 of them fit on it because it is quite long but I want them to be comfortable. Should I get something bigger or are they just learning how to balance still?
    Thank you
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

    34,028
    453
    448
    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    They're still learning. The pole is probably not uncomfortable now, but when they are a little bigger, they will do better on a flatter roost, or a fatter one if round. It would be best if it's not something slippery like a PVC pipe, also.
     
  3. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

    5,387
    916
    291
    Dec 25, 2012
    A one inch roost is fine for young chicks but by the time they are 12 - 14 weeks I would recommend a 4 x 6 inch landscape post split or ripped length wise down the 6 inch way. This yields two (2) 8 foot long roost poles. Because the narrow side of the landscape timbers are radiused or curved it fits a chickens' foot comfortably but is still flat enough that the birds toes are nestled in its belly down during freezing cold weather.

    Some folks use 2 X 4 (1 1/2 by 3 1/2 boards turned on edge or even 1 X 4 boards laying on their sides. I just think that the curved edges of landscape timbers fits a chickens' foot better.

    Don't worry too much about your chicks falling out of bed, that's why they come with wings.
     
  4. pawsfoot

    pawsfoot Out Of The Brooder

    11
    1
    24
    Aug 3, 2014
    Thanks. I too figured that PVC would be too slippery, and I didn't think about the landscaping poles, but I will look at them soon because we are building their coop now.
     
  5. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

    34,028
    453
    448
    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I use 2x4's on their wide side, which lots of people do here. Lots more use fat branches. I do like the idea of landscaping timbers, though. You should be able to tell what they are comfortable on when they are full size. They tend to do a lot of jostling for position at roost time, so give lots of opportunity for watching how they move around, lol.
     
  6. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    I have started using 2 x 6" lumber with the six inch side down or flat for them to sit on. They tend to sit toward the edge, frontwards or backwards and by using the wider board I can get away with a smaller poop board under them. They are essentially 'off center' enough with a 2 x 6 that they tend to hit the 'mark' more often. Also everyone seems to like a nice perch that they can hang a toe over should they wish to do so. Branches are best left for the little wild birds, and are not a best use for chickens, who are sort of flat footed… at least among the worlds birds.

    Best to you and your birds,

    RJ
     
  7. birdman55

    birdman55 Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,429
    548
    224
    Jul 22, 2014
    michigan
    My Coop
    im used to work landscaping for about over ten years and if your going to use any treated timber including landscape timber just be aware that they soak the wood in some nasty chemicals that aren't even good for humans to be around if you put it in a fire....so if a bird pecks at this it could possibly eat it and who knows what could happen....I use reg two by fours not treated for roosts...on its side..hope this info helps some people...im not sure of the chemical that is used but I also have contractor friends and they even go as far to say that even not wearing a mask when you cut the boards is bad for the human body....so take it however you would like...our bodies can take a beating but birds are a lot smaller...
     
  8. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    7,618
    1,662
    421
    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    Thank you for discussing this birdman,
    Hubby and I were just discussing this today. We have 18 yr. old dog yards we are converting to grow out pens.
    They were built with treated wood which has long ago leached out of them. They stand the PA weather very wel.
    So we were trying to decide whether to use treated wood for the new partitions we want to add. It didn't bother
    the collies but we were wondering about the birds.
    Wondering how long regular 2x4's will last.

    Best,
    Karen
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2014

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by