bantam chickens sleeping in tree

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by filibuster93, Sep 3, 2014.

  1. filibuster93

    filibuster93 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 24, 2013
    rome, ga
    So, we have 6 full sized hens, and 4 bantam chickens (2 female, 2 male). When we first brought the bantams out (they are a few months younger than the others), we kept them in a different coop. At first they slept in that coop well. Then they moved to sleeping on an old swing trellis right near coop. I had to climb up and get them down every night to put in coop. Later, after the chickens got along better, I moved the bantams to the bigger main coop. It took a few days, but they started going in there at night and sleeping in it fine. Then after a couple of weeks, they started to sleep in the tree above the coop. Since our coop is 2 stories (3 if you count pen part underneath it), it is a good 6 feet tall. Now I have to climb up a ladder, on top of the coop, and get the chickens out of the branches of the tree. I have tried to put them up earlier. Sometimes that works, and sometimes it just ends up with us running around the yard a lot.

    My question is, is this a bantam thing, or just my weird chickens thing? They are a little bigger than a robin size but smaller than a pigeon.
    I wouldn't worry too much except, I don't want them eaten by a possum or other tree creature.

    picture of chickens on trellis, and on our picnic table to get a sense of size.

    Thanks. [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Kiaton

    Kiaton Out Of The Brooder

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    May 2, 2014
    New Mexico, USA
    Some chickens just do that, and the others are following their example except only the bantams are light enough to actually be able to stay on the branch.

    Do you have a lot of predators in your area? If not I wouldn't worry about it a lot but you might want to confine them to the coop for a week if they are in danger when sleeping in the trees.
     
  3. texaspolloloco

    texaspolloloco Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 25, 2014
    Georgetown TX
    My chickens did this as well. I thought what could it hurt. So I was looking up at them in a tree one night when I shined my flashlight over to the next branch and saw a possum. Well I shot the possum but his friend killed on of my Rhode Island Whites that night. I guess he figured it was and eye for an eye. I shot him the next night but he crawled away. I have not seen any since but I no longer let my girls sleep in the trees.

    P.S. that was my first time to loose one of my girls to a predator. I felt like a looser of a chicken father.
     
  4. filibuster93

    filibuster93 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 24, 2013
    rome, ga
    We do not have too much in way of predators as we are in a pretty residential area (as opposed to middle of nowhere country). But we do have possums and what not, which would be my main concern. Most animals stay out of actual yard since we have dogs and a cat, and well, if something gets in the yard, it probably won't last long. But we do have a possum that regularly uses the trees above our yard to go over our yard to other houses. Our Rottie is good about trying to keep it away, but she can't/won't stay out all night. She is very protective of our chickens (they are her babies in her mind) so she usually barks and scares away the possum when she sees it. For now I will try to put them up at night earlier. I would keep them in pen all day, but then the hens wouldn't be able to lay in there. Well, I could keep them in pen, but close coop door from pen, and leave side door to coop open. That way, bantams would be stuck in pen, but hens could still get in and out of coop to lay and eat.....that might have to be the plan. I was just curious to if it was a common thing for bantams since they are smaller and lighter, or if our chickens are just special. The two main culprits are the stupid one Mycroft (he probably will get killed somehow because he is stupid and stubborn-not good qualities together), and Irene, the grey one who looks like a pigeon, as she is the lightest and flies the most. Also, would be a good idea to clip their wings maybe? I haven't looked too much into it, because since they are so small, I would like them to be able to fly away from a predator if need be. I also have no idea how to do that, if it is good or bad for chicken, or where I would get that done. Thoughts?
     
  5. filibuster93

    filibuster93 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 24, 2013
    rome, ga
    you are not a loser chicken father. We lost a few to one of our dogs. That made us feel like horrible parents. Now that dog has to wear a muzzle outside when the chickens are out. It is just in her breed to kill/eat the chickens, so this is the best solution we came up with. Dog is ok and doesn't mind muzzle, and chickens are safer, and everyone can breathe easier. Of course, the older chickens, have warned the younger ones about the "white devil dog". But I love her anyway. Things happen, and it is sad, but we learn and go forward and protect our babies a little better.
     

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