Change in Roosting Habits

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Darlagips, May 27, 2012.

  1. Darlagips

    Darlagips In the Brooder

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    Feb 1, 2012
    Splendora, TX
    I have a large covered chicken pen with a small open house inside that some of the chickens were roosting in during the night. Some of the hens preferred perches, but there was never enough space it seemed. So, yesterday, my husband installed new perches all around one whole side of the pen (down the long side and across the front (where the ones who roosted on the perches) always sat. We used the same perches, just put them lower, and farther from the fence so no predator could get a paw in. And we put them in a straight light so that all of the roosts were at the same height.

    I have a weird question. Yesterday, all was fine. The hens who slept in the house usually, slept in the house. The ones who roosted high, roosted just fine. However, tonight, all my Buff Orpingtons (the ones who usually slept in the house) are all outside in the outside run attached to their covered pen. They are safe - we have hardware cloth everywhere. But for some reason, they will not go back into the covered pen. They are all huddled in one corner near the front of the covered pen.

    I thought maybe there might possibly have been a snake or somehow something was in the pen that was not right. But I checked before dark when I noticed them acting so strange, and then again just a bit ago, I went out there armed with a high powered light and my shotgun in case I came face to face with a chicken snake or something. Nada - nothing amiss.

    It's hot here in Texas right now, so I guess that's not a problem them being on the outside of the chicken coop, but it's just so strange, I was wondering if anybody else has experienced something like that -and if so - what could you tell me to look for. Oh - my hens are a full 4 months old.

    Regards,
    Darla
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Heat very likely causing change in roosting site. Try stepping up ventilation. Also consider change related to social structure.
     
  3. Darlagips

    Darlagips In the Brooder

    59
    1
    39
    Feb 1, 2012
    Splendora, TX
    I guess it must have been the change in the roosts. Tonight everyone is roosting on the new/old bars that are now all the same height, and nobody is sleeping in the chicken house. Go figure.
     

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