Baby chicks roosting already? What to do?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by onlyeonelh, Apr 5, 2017.

  1. onlyeonelh

    onlyeonelh New Egg

    Apr 5, 2017

    Our chicks - 4 are for sure female, two are starting to jump up and sit on the edge of their temporary housing.. is this normal? Does it mean I need to do anything new or different until they go outside?

    Like should they have a bar to sit on even now being inside still under lamp?

    I've read they can go to coop around 10 weeks? So we're still around 2 weeks from that from what I was told.
  2. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    If they are 8 weeks old they should be off heat already. Start weaning them off of heat asap and move them out by the weekend, assuming you don't have any others to integrate them with.

    ETA I'm surprised it's taken them so long. Mine start hopping up and wanting to roost on stuff by three weeks!
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2017
  3. Kellycbf

    Kellycbf Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 15, 2017
    Midwest US
    We had our baby chickens home for about 6 hours before I got a piece of wood for them to roost on. Ours were a bit different in ages. We think they were anything from a few days old to 2 weeks old. They love to perch from an early age. I would put some sort of perch in the brooder. How old are the chickens? I love looking in on them perching, it makes me smile.
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I don’t know where you are located, what your weather is like, or what your coop looks like, but at 8 weeks yours could have already been outside. My situation is different from yours, I raise mine in a brooder in the coop so that are acclimated, but mine regularly go through nights below freezing with no supplemental heat a little after they are 5 weeks old. Unless you have really strange circumstances yours should be able to go outside to stay today.

    Perching is when they hop up on things to play. They really like that. Roosting is when they sleep on something up high overnight. It’s a little different terminology.

    Baby chicks like to perch at a very young age, sometimes just a few days. I’ve had a broody hen take her 2-week-old chicks to the roosts, they had to fly about 3’ horizontal and 2 feet vertically up to get to the roosts. Two weeks old. Normally my brooder raised chicks start roosting around 10 to 12 weeks old, though I have had some start on their own at 5 weeks. Some go a lot longer than 12 weeks before they roost. My broody hens normally wait until the chicks are 4 weeks old before they take them to the roosts. There is nothing consistent about it though. Each brood is unique.

    That chick sitting on the brooder doesn’t look 8 weeks old to me. It may be, could you possibly give us a few better shots of the chicks? If they are 8 weeks old, I’m amazed they waited this long to start flying out. And mentioning where you are so we know your climate can help. I modified my profile to include that information.

    But to get to your question, I have a perch in the brooder when I put the chicks in straight out of the incubator. They normally don’t start playing on it for a few days but it is always available. You do not have to give them a perch, you are not being cruel if you don’t, but it doesn’t hurt and gives them something to do. It will not keep them from flying out of the brooder if you give them something to perch on, but it won’t hurt anything either. To keep them in the brooder put some type of top on it. A wire mesh top works well and allows ventilation.

    Where are my manners, welcome to the forum!
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2017
  5. MigraineMan

    MigraineMan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2017
    Frederick, Maryland
    Our second batch of chicks go in The Bucket while cleaning out the brooder -

    They're about 2-1/2 weeks old. Ahhh, yep ... that's not gonna work for long -


    She flapped like heck, hooked her neck on the rim of the bucket and pulled herself up. Sat there for about a minute before gracelessly falling back into the bucket.
    1 person likes this.
  6. Kellycbf

    Kellycbf Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 15, 2017
    Midwest US
    Yes, perching, not roosting, thank you for the correction, I appreciate you being willing to correct me. :)

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by