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Chickens scared of their coop?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Erind, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. Erind

    Erind Hatching

    Aug 14, 2011
    Newport, OR
    Hey all,

    A few nights ago a raccoon attacked two of my ducks and killed one of them, they were in the chicken pen when they were attacked, the chickens stayed quiet and were fine. The next morning when I went to let the chickens out they were very reluctant to come out, usually they just fly out one by one but they needed a lot of encouragement. When I came home from work that evening they were no where to be found, they usually roam around our property and put themselves to bed at night but they were MIA. They next morning they came strolling back into the yard from an unknown place. I think they may be scared to go back in, I don't blame them it was pretty awful. I guess my question is do I need to move things around? Will they go back in by themselves? I don't want anymore dead pets, I feel sick that this even happened. I am going to try cleaning everything out, maybe there is blood or something.

    Also the one duck that was injured is being kept in a confined space, but the uninjured one keeps calling for her. The vet said that ducks can sense weakness and try to kill the weaker one and to keep them separate but they seem less stressed when together and the uninjured one seems to be taking the other under her wing so to speak. Does anyone have any experience with this?

    Any advice would be much appreciated.

    Thank you all,


  2. chicken grandma

    chicken grandma Songster

    Sep 1, 2008
    west michigan
    We have had chickens spend the night in the neighbors yard after an attack but they did come back and got used to our home and the coop again.
    If I were you, I would shut my chickens up at night. Close the door on them and open it in the a.m.

    As for the ducks, follow your gut. If you think they should be closer together, move them. Keep one in a dog crate and one loose in the barnyard.
    Again, I would shut the ducks up at night. You can get a shed that is resin (hard plastic) and it has ventilation also at the top. The door goes 'click' and no body gets in over night. Make sure the shed has a resin bottom that attaches to the sides. Cover the bottom of the plastic shed with a tarp and then pine shavings. Set food and water on cement blocks and you have a safe place for over night!

    The raccoon will probably be back for more. Make sure your animals are raccoon proofed overnight. Chainlink won't do it. Anything they can dig under won't work. Any space larger than about 1 inch is too large. God bless!
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] They associate the coop with the raccoon attack. It will probably be necessary to lock them in the coop for a period of ime until they feel secure again. If you have not disposed of the coon, it will find wherever they are roosting and kill them. It will also try to gain entrance to your coop which may be helping to scare the hens. My suggestion: lock up the hens for a while, and get rid of the coon. Good luck.

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