I have six pullets, about six months old. A couple of them are laying, and they have been mostly incredibly well behaved and easy to handle and care for. However, just about a week ago, some problems have started to occur. I have a half an acre backyard with plenty of bushes, tall grasses, trees, dirt piles, and other things the chickens love. The fence is only four feet tall (it was not designed for them), but they were previously content to stay in the yard. Every night they put themselves inside of their coop and all I had to do was close the door at the end of the day. About a week ago we caught one of them in the driveway on five separate occasions within just a few hours, and also noticed that they DO know how to get themselves back into the yard after jumping over the fence. However, we are in a somewhat suburban area and while my neighbors like my chickens, I don't want them to be roaming around in other people's yards and definitely don't need them to be hit by a car. Not knowing what to do about this, I kept them in their run all day for two days in a row. Whether or not this was the right thing to do or if it was a long enough span of time I do not know, but I felt bad either way and let them out yesterday. I admit I made the mistake of assuming they would put themselves to bed, but to be fair to myself they had never NOT gone back into their coop on their own by nightfall, even when they were getting out of the yard. They, however, had not put themselves to bed that night, and I went out in the morning greeted by a chicken coming out from under the porch. I caught her and put her back in, only to turn around and see another chicken beyond the fence by my right side neighbor's house. I caught her and put her back in as well, counting only five safe and secure chickens. I walked around the entire back and front yard embarrassing myself by calling for the chicken for several minutes until I finally saw her strut over across my left side neighbor's driveway, coming all the way from the house on the OTHER side of my neighbor's. So I can no longer trust my chickens to not get themselves killed by either of my neighbors' dogs or a speeding car or wander several houses down the street. I've been keeping them inside the run because I do not know what to do, but I really don't want to have to keep them in there all of the time. They desperately WANT to get out of the run and I want to be able to let them out. Not only is all this happening all of the sudden, but now they are not even sleeping at night. Our bedroom is actually rather close to the coop and on several occasions, at varying times of the night - 11pm or 2am for example - we have heard loud clucking and commotion. I've gone out and checked on them every time that I've heard them making a ruckus at night, but every time, there is nothing amiss. There are no lights on them, it is entirely dark in their run, the run is closed and secure, and there are no predators, pests, or other creatures to be seen. It's never all of the chickens, usually 3-4 are being good in the coop, while the rest of them are in the run making noise and jumping around. There are no possums in the coop and I've never actually even seen one, ever. I'm actually in a somewhat busy area, there's a busy road to the front, other houses all around in any direction, and businesses just up the street. While predators and large pests are not entirely dismissable, they are unlikely. It's also been a lot cooler than it was back when they were reliably putting themselves to bed and sleeping through the night, so I know it is not too hot in the coop. The only thing I can figure is that keeping them in the run all day has made them upset somehow so now they aren't sleeping. I'm not sure if this is even a behavior chickens can exhibit. I have no idea what could have caused these changes in behavior and I really don't know what to do to fix it. I was hoping someone would have some insight. I really do not want to have problem chickens as I'm going to be having a baby at any given time this month and if they don't get their act together by then, they will unfortunately have to take the back burner for several months while we are adjusting to having a child.