chicken help

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jetskier506, Sep 23, 2011.

  1. jetskier506

    jetskier506 Out Of The Brooder

    23
    0
    32
    Sep 15, 2011
    so my chickens are sleeping outside on top of a pen and on the handrails to the porch. IM tired of crappy porches. So i set them up a coop and surrounded the whole area with straw heat light on a timer and tons of solar lights and perches. how do i get them to start sleeping in the back instead of the front. theyre free range so only the smaller ones stay in the pen.
     
  2. MyBlackHen

    MyBlackHen Chillin' With My Peeps

    141
    0
    101
    Jun 26, 2010
    Upstate New York
    Not sure if I totally understand your situation. They didn't have a formal coop before and were just sleeping outside and roosting on your porch railings ... now you set up a coop but they're not going into it?

    One idea might be to wait til they're roosting (wherever that is) and pick them up and put them into the coop (closing the door so they can't get out). They next night they might do it on their own, or you might have to bring them in a few nights in a row. I have found that most of my chickens get the hint pretty quickly, but I have come across a few stubborn ones.

    Good luck!
     
  3. ChicKat

    ChicKat Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    When you say 'back instead of front', I am guessing you mean the coop area you set up for them is in the back and the porch you want them off is in the front.

    My only suggestion would be that you need to confine them to their new coop for a period of time until they get the idea in their brains that that is not some strange place, but rather "home".
     
  4. jetskier506

    jetskier506 Out Of The Brooder

    23
    0
    32
    Sep 15, 2011
    Like in the front yard by the porch they had a tiny "coop" for when they were younger, but now that they're bigger. I let them free range. The "coop has a small run and enclosed part, and there's two laying hens and two smaller chickens (the others peck at). I built a place out back had the whole are lined with straw. solar lights surrounding it. The only water thing is back there, and thats where i feed them, but at nights they sleep on the hand rails on the porch and every morning its covered in crap. I would pefer them out back, but i don't want to cage them up, how do i do this? I tried moving them at night but by the time i get one the other would fly back to the front. impossible to get 12 back there.
     
  5. Nonny

    Nonny Chillin' With My Peeps

    597
    18
    121
    May 16, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    You said you don't want to cage them up, but it sounds like, at least short term, that will be your best option for re-training them.

    If they are usually exposed at night maybe they feel safer on the porch? (I assume it's a higher than the roosts in your new coop?).

    If you don't want to keep them in a coop at night I'm not sure you have much say in where they end up roosting if they decide the new coop isn't suitable.
     
  6. MyBlackHen

    MyBlackHen Chillin' With My Peeps

    141
    0
    101
    Jun 26, 2010
    Upstate New York
    I agree - I think you will need to lock them in to keep them there overnight for a few nights in a row. Hopefully you have some help because moving 12 one by one is quite a chore!

    We had a batch of 5 chicks that kept sleeping in the nesting boxes instead of the roosts with all of the other hens. Every night we would go in after it got dark to move them all to the roost. It was a pain, so I feel for you. A couple got the message after a couple of days, but I still have one who I have to move every night (this has been going on for over a month).

    Without locking them in, I don't see how you'll be able to keep them where you want them.
    [​IMG] Good luck ...
     
  7. Nonny

    Nonny Chillin' With My Peeps

    597
    18
    121
    May 16, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Another thought is to make the hand rails less pleasant for them to roost on. Maybe some oil or something to make it too slippery? Or keep a bright light on there for a few nights? Keep shooing them off it every single time they jump up there until they give up?
     
  8. MyBlackHen

    MyBlackHen Chillin' With My Peeps

    141
    0
    101
    Jun 26, 2010
    Upstate New York
    Quote:Good idea - another thing you can do is teepee chicken wire over them so that they can't comfortably land on them.
     
  9. jetskier506

    jetskier506 Out Of The Brooder

    23
    0
    32
    Sep 15, 2011
    So I built a small cage for them in the back yard and tore down the one in the front hoping they'd go to the back the cage I set up has a coop 4x8 feet. An enclosed section 4x8 covered and shaded and a run 16x12 feet how many chickens can it hold... But it's only 3 feet tall
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by