Chickens sleeping outside?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by wynngeary, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. wynngeary

    wynngeary New Egg

    Nov 18, 2012
    This is our first year with our the chickens. We live in Philadelphia and it's getting colder, but we've still had some pretty warm days. We've installed just a 60 watt light bulb on a timer in our coop that turns on from 6-8 am then from 3-6 pm. Both our B.O. and our Barred Plymouth Rock have started laying in the past few weeks but we're still waiting on our Easter Egger. Over the summer the chickens slept on the roosting bar inside the hen house but recently (the past month or so) the 3 have been sleeping on the roosting bar outside. We were wondering if either or a combination of these things could explain why they have started and if so is it bad and should we do anything about it?

  2. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2012
    You might not want the hens sleeping outside because animals, such as cats, hawks, raccoons, etc, can kill them. It may also be too cold for the hens this winter to sleep outside. The more comfortable the hens are, the better their egg productivity will be.

    I take it you are using the light to make the chickens lay eggs. You want the chickens to have 14 hours of light per day. So use the light in the coop for enough hours to add to the natural daylight to give the hens 14 hours of light per day.

    You also need to feed the hens laying feed if you want the hens to be the most productive they can be.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I've had birds roost in trees outside year round and no problems, the girls gave eggs well and everyone was quite healthy. Our weather isn't very severe, but it did get down in the single digits and some very memorable wind storms.

    Your light would be why they're laying. Isn't that why you installed it?
  4. TurtlePowerTrav

    TurtlePowerTrav T.K.'s Farm

    Jul 29, 2012
    Oregon City, OR
    My Coop
    They may not be roosting inside because of mites. This is when mites are bad. After dark, put your hands on the roosts and leave them there for a few minutes. If you have mites you will feel them crawl on your hands. If you have them you will need to treat for it and repeat in 7 days, then replace all litter.

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