Chickens not sleeping in coop

ChickenJV12

Songster
Sep 28, 2018
141
257
132
Hudsonville, MI
So, a few of my chickens have recently been sleeping up on top of my goat's barn. I've tried locking them into the coop for a few days to learn to sleep there, but they still wouldn't go back to the coop at night. Any solutions??
 

ChickenJV12

Songster
Sep 28, 2018
141
257
132
Hudsonville, MI
Sharing more information would help. Size, numbers of birds, roosts, and arrangements of them, and pictures if possible. Chickens should always prefer a safe roomy coop to outside. So there's obviously something wrong.
I have 25 standard chickens, I have 2 ~8ft long roosts and one ~5 ft long roost in the coop. I honestly have no idea
 

azygous

Crossing the Road
10 Years
Dec 11, 2009
17,839
20,846
912
Colorado Rockies
The few who are shunning the coop are probably getting sick and tired of being knocked off perches that are only able to accommodate some of the flock, not everyone. Only the most assertive chickens will be up to the competition for roosting space. The more timid ones will avoid the conflict and find an alternative.

If you were to watch the chickens trying to get settled on the perches, you would see they need more than a foot of linear space to fly up. With a foot or less, flapping wings are likely to knock off the perch those already up and trying to settle in. Tempers flare up creating a dysfunctional environment.

Before you try to force the outliers back into the coop, you need to expand the roosting space. It's always preferable to err on the side of too much space than trying to fit the maximum number into the bare minimum.

After you expand roosting space, block off the goat roof. Chickens will do anything to avoid change so the only way is to make it impossible to access an area where you don't want them.
 

ChickenJV12

Songster
Sep 28, 2018
141
257
132
Hudsonville, MI
The few who are shunning the coop are probably getting sick and tired of being knocked off perches that are only able to accommodate some of the flock, not everyone. Only the most assertive chickens will be up to the competition for roosting space. The more timid ones will avoid the conflict and find an alternative.

If you were to watch the chickens trying to get settled on the perches, you would see they need more than a foot of linear space to fly up. With a foot or less, flapping wings are likely to knock off the perch those already up and trying to settle in. Tempers flare up creating a dysfunctional environment.

Before you try to force the outliers back into the coop, you need to expand the roosting space. It's always preferable to err on the side of too much space than trying to fit the maximum number into the bare minimum.

After you expand roosting space, block off the goat roof. Chickens will do anything to avoid change so the only way is to make it impossible to access an area where you don't want them.
I know that there is enough space because I've seen them all on there before. And suddenly 2 days ago, like 6 or 7 of them decided to sleep somewhere else
 

TheGreenManFarm

In the Brooder
Mar 8, 2018
31
29
44
Not presuming to contradict anyone else on this thread, as I'm a first-year poultry person. But I have one chicken (out of 42 + 7 ducks), just one single little ginger chicken (she's a golden red/star), who likes to fall asleep a little earlier than the rest. She roosts in a safe spot in a fir tree, so she's well shielded from wind, water, or owls (and about 8' high so foxes are a no-go). All the other birds are easy to guide into their coop around dusk, they respond to my voice "it's bedtime birds!" and the sight of their night feeder and fresh bedding in my hands. But she'll sleep through that if I don't specifically look for her, wake her up, and shoo her to the ground at which point she makes a beeline for the coop.

Bottom line, if 48/49 birds evidently find their house comfy and spacious enough, is it possible I have one maverick who just marches to the beat of her own drum here? Hahaha
 
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