chicken in hiding

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by lauraelbert, Nov 1, 2015.

  1. lauraelbert

    lauraelbert Just Hatched

    Nov 1, 2015
    My little flock of 6 (free-range/front yard) was fine until two days ago. One disappeared, thought she was dead for sure, but she comes out for lunch, then back into hiding in the juniper. OK for now until it gets colder, but she should be back in the coop with the heat lamp!! Don't know if a hawk or another pissy chicken scared her off. Don't know if I should try to grab her (easier said than done) or wait 'til the urge to rejoin the flock kicks in.
  2. Attila the Hen

    Attila the Hen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 6, 2010
    Blue Ridge GA
    I would look to see if she is sitting on a nest. If she is you can move the nest to a safe place and hopefully she will follow. I agree, you should get her in to a safe place at night.

    Don't know where you live but you might want to research using a heat lamp. I live in northern GA and it snows and gets cold here but I don't heat the coop. I don't even have walls --just tarps over the hardwire. They do well in the cold. It's the heat that is the killer. Most people don't recommend heat lamps because of the risk of fire.
  3. brokenknee

    brokenknee Out Of The Brooder

    I had one that did not want to return to the coop at night. I waited until just before dark as I knew were she was roosting, she was much easier to grab.

    I would then carry her back and lock her in the coop. I only had to do this a couple of times now she heads back to the coop with the rest of the girls once it starts getting dark.

    This one the wife calls gator-girl. She has not really been accepted back into the flock since a skunk maimed her.
  4. lauraelbert

    lauraelbert Just Hatched

    Nov 1, 2015
    Thanks to you who have chimed in! She was a happy flock member until 2 days ago.

    I'm in Colorado - and always do the heat lamp because mid-winter we get pretty cold. My girls are spoiled so it kicks in at about 42 degrees.

    I'd check on the nest, but afraid if I scare her she's just going to find another spot that I can't find! If she comes out again for lunch (yes, they get lunch) - I'll try again to grab her and lock her in somewhere 'til I can throw her in with the rest at sunset.

    Love this site - you guys are great! - Laura
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Chickens don't want to move in the dark. If you know where she is at, it's the best time to grab her. I would keep her locked up in the coop or crate(with food & water) for a couple days, so she realizes that is home. Since she does come back at lunch, I do think she has a hidden nest.
  6. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
  7. N F C

    N F C doo be doo be doo Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013
  8. trailrider330

    trailrider330 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2013
    Midwest America
    Welcome to the BYC flock! We are glad you joined us!

  9. NickyKnack

    NickyKnack Love is Silkie soft!

    Welcome to BYC and the coop! There's a lot of great peeps here! Feel free to ask lots of questions. But most of all, make yourself at home. I'm so glad you decided to joined the BYC family. I look forward to seeing you around BYC.
  10. lauraelbert

    lauraelbert Just Hatched

    Nov 1, 2015
    To Attila and others that have been so kind to reply - You were right! I grabbed her at sunset, locked her in with the flock for a day and a half, but she went back to the hiding place. So next night, grabbed her again and looked in the morning - 13 eggs (my chicken has been leading a double life!! :) - been stashing eggs for a couple weeks, just moved out in the last 5 days.

    So - I guess this is just remote "broody". I've locked EVERYONE in for the last day - especially since we get our first snow tonight.

    Question is: Remove ALL the eggs from her stash so that if she does go back its obviously not a good nest - but then if she is still is that mode, she'll find another spot that I have to go searching for.

    -OR- leave 'em, so that when she disappears she will hopefully go back to the same place???

    It's a tiny coop thingy, and I hate to penalize everyone - but ****** or not - she's a lot safer in there! - Laura

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