Chickens staying indoors all day- Need advice!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kschix, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. kschix

    kschix Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2009
    DeSoto, Kansas
    We have 3 hens and a rooster. We recently purchased another 4 full grown hens. We have a coop with a small chicken door that leads to their run. We usually open the door early in the morning and the chickens spend the day outside then go indoors only when completely dark. Since we got our new hens the chickens all stay indoors all day long and only come out when someone brings them food. I don't know if I should start closing their door during the day forcing them to stay outside? If I do that is it okay to leave their food and water inside? Also, will the hens just lay their eggs in the chicken run or wait until we open the door and their able to get to their nesting boxes?? Any input is greatly appreciated:)
     
  2. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    do you feed them inside? maybe you could put some feed outside, or some scratch grains.. give them something to go out for.
     
  3. kschix

    kschix Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2009
    DeSoto, Kansas
    Yes we feed them inside. Maybe I can try putting some scratch out there in a container for them.
     
  4. zatsdeb

    zatsdeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2007
    Lincoln, Illinois
    I know my chickens love to scratch around!! It's worth a try, once they get outside they may realize what they are missing! I know I have some that will stay in, my DH had the feed inside, and I started feeding them outside, and they all come out now! We always had the scratch grains outside though, the majority of the chickens always go out.
     
  5. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 30, 2008
    Missouri
    Put their feed and water outside, this will force them out. They will not deprive themselves of the basics.

    On your question about where will the hens lay. They will eventually lay in the run but before they do it is a mad house. When I give the coop a good cleaning and lock them in the run the hens try everything in their power to get back in to lay. They fly at the windows, try to get out of their covered run, walk the fence line to the point you think they will drop dead from exhaustion.
    I finally solved the problem by cleaning their nest boxes first thing in the morning and then placing in the run until I am done. They lay in their nest boxes.
     
  6. Shared Acres

    Shared Acres Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 10, 2008
    Northeast Fla
    When I have had to lock a chicken out of the coop she will get frustrated and want to lay in the chicken house. I have removeable nest boxes and will put one outside. They would lay in that, unless they saw me opening the door to the coop, then it was a mad dash to me to get into the real house and nest box.
     
  7. DawnSuiter

    DawnSuiter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Whats wrong with lettin gthe chickens decide where they want to be if they have a choice?

    also.. when the egg is coming, it matters not where you are, it's coming out! so they will lay when the urge motivates them.
     
  8. kschix

    kschix Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2009
    DeSoto, Kansas
    Thanks for all the input. I do like letting them have the choice of where they want to hang out. However, our chicken coop is filling up with poop at a rapid rate now plus who wants to see the chickens all "cooped" up inside when the weather is perfect! I'm going to try moving their feed outside. Right now we use a big feeder that holds a ton of food- but if we move it outside should I skip using their big feeder and instead just bring some food out daily for them? If it rains their feeder would get all wet.
     
  9. DawnSuiter

    DawnSuiter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Since you recently added 4 hens, I just think giving them all time to settle in for a few weeks, and decide who is who and all until their comfortable as opposed to changing any routines.
    You could just add a feeder and waterer to the outside first.. maybe that would help. or put out some greens in the run to help entice them out, or hang a cabbage or something.

    I hope everyone comes out soon for ya [​IMG]
     
  10. CovenantCreek

    CovenantCreek Chicks Rule!

    Oct 19, 2007
    Franklin, TN
    I agree with Dawn, I think they're staying in 'cuz they're new and ready to dive into the new routine. Let them adjust and soon enough they'll be out with everyone else.
     

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