Chickens never go into coop, what to do for nest boxes?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by katydidit, Jul 2, 2011.

  1. katydidit

    katydidit Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 10, 2011
    I have four 14 week old girls... they have a hutch style coop enclosed inside a spacious run. When making the transition from brooder to coop, I kept them "cooped up" in the coop and did not allow access to the run for a week so that they could aclimate (and we could critter proof the run!).

    Since the time they were 5 weeks old I put shavings in the coop. got it all nice and ready, and to this day, I havent seen a sign that they have even used their fancy schmancy roost in the coop, and have not even had to change the shavings!! I have not put their nest boxes in yet, and was planning on doing so soon with a golf ball or two to give them the "idea".

    My dilemma is that they dont even seem to go in there!!! I certainly do not want to put their nest boxes on the ground outside the coop (after all, what did I build it for???).

    What is the best way to do this? Any experiences here? Am i overzealous in planning on putting their nest boxes in too early (I'm hopeful by early august we may have our first eggs-at least thats what I've been telling the girls [​IMG])

    PLEASE help!!
     
  2. so lucky

    so lucky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 31, 2011
    SE Missouri
    They don't go into the coop to sleep at night?
     
  3. Jferlisi

    Jferlisi i dont eat chicken!!!!

    Nov 2, 2010
    Menifee CA
    Quote:LOL i talk to mine all the time. I tell them to go sit on some eggs i want babies. they dont listen to me tho >>. I would wait another 2 weeks or so. When you do make the nest you can always put them in the run until they start laying in them and then once they do put the boxes in the coop and nail them in and then lock them in there. That should help.
     
  4. katydidit

    katydidit Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 10, 2011
    No!! They never go in there! lol. They huddle together, in the dirt, and sleep. They go in the coop only to kick around the shavings, rarely, if ever.

    Anyone else have this problem?? They walk up and down the ramp to get to their pop door, and will run inside to chase one another, so its not an issue that they CANT get in, but I'm at a loss!!
     
  5. Jferlisi

    Jferlisi i dont eat chicken!!!!

    Nov 2, 2010
    Menifee CA
    Quote:How big is it?
     
  6. katydidit

    katydidit Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 10, 2011
    the run itself is 8x8'. The coop inside of it is a hutch, 2.5 feet off the ground. dimensions: 5x4x3'. More than enough space for four pullets!! I have a link to it here:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=483282

    They are all obsessive bug chasers (plenty of them in this heat!) and they love to forage for the raspberry seedlings that poke through the fence... maybe they are just outdoor girls?? We get no rain to speak of here, especially this time of year (read, 4" or less per year) so its not exactly wet conditions that would make them want a dry comfy coop...
     
  7. so lucky

    so lucky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 31, 2011
    SE Missouri
    Maybe it's too hot in there? How long have you had them "in" the coop and run? Even tho my chicks' coop is hot, they go in and go to the roost faithfully at 8:15. What do your girls do when it rains? Maybe they don't feel comfortable in there. [​IMG]
     
  8. so lucky

    so lucky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 31, 2011
    SE Missouri
    Oh, I see your post about rain now. Hmmmm...
     
  9. katydidit

    katydidit Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 10, 2011
    its 100+ degrees the whole summer here, but there is both shade cloth and lattice over their run (its a good 20 degrees cooler in their run than in the backyard). and the east/west exposure of their run gives them a breezeway. They do roost in the evening, on the ROOF of the coop. I've got some mentally challenged chickens here.
     
  10. Jferlisi

    Jferlisi i dont eat chicken!!!!

    Nov 2, 2010
    Menifee CA
    Ya thats plenty enough space and your run looks very secure too,try putting them in the coop at night on the roost and looking it at night and that should help.
     

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