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Chickens who are bird brains

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MelodyC, Feb 18, 2016.

  1. MelodyC

    MelodyC Out Of The Brooder

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    Just curious - we have a flock of 12, and we just had to go out in the storm and rescue some. There is one Ameraucana who refuses to go into the coop. We found her hiding, and also the rooster hiding between the planters and three RIR hiding under a leaning board. I think the rooster was out watching over them, as he's normally in the coop. Do you think these 4 will finally come to their senses soon? What do you do when you have birds that are just too stupid to help themselves? It's getting frustrating trying to round them up every evening. Tonight is 40+ mph winds and torrential rain. We were both soaked to the bone after we finally got them in. Any advice??? Leaving them out is not an option, as we have cougar and bobcats that hang around The cougar has been coming through fairly regularly, and we would prefer not to feed him.
     
  2. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    There are a few things that can cause the behavior mentioned.
    Lack of proper roost space.
    Time of day they are expected to go in. Mine do not go in until right after dusk.
    New chickens not knowing where they are expected to go.
    A mean one in the coop not letting them come in. (I have one of those)
    Lack of ventilation on the coop making it to hot inside.
    Noise from the storm driving them out of the coop. (sounds like this is not the case for you since it sounds like yours do this often)


    To cure them not knowing where to go I closed mine up in the coop for about 4 days and the next day they all went to bed as expected.
    Watch for a mean one standing guard at the door. (My leghorn does this)
    Check your roosts out and make sure that you have at least one foot for each chicken.

    I hope this helps shed some light on the issue.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. MelodyC

    MelodyC Out Of The Brooder

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    We'll put up an additional roost in there and see if it helps. Right now we have about 12' of roosts, but maybe they could use more. It's their old coop that is up now, but maybe they are still confused.
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Overrun With Chickens

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    How long have you had these chickens? Have they always been like this? What changes have you made recently to the coop and yards? Chickens are put off by change and get confused as well as stressed. Are there any among the flock that are overly aggressive to the others? Have you watched what goes on at roosting time?

    If you have some that are being aggressive to others on the perch at roosting time, you need more than just one foot of linear space per chicken to accommodate flapping wings while trying to get onto the perch. With too little space, chickens get knocked off, tempers fly, and timid birds give up and don't even try to go in at night. Would you?

    Take some time to observe your chickens' behavior. It will tell you what you need to do to improve things so they will feel safer inside than remaining outdoors.
     
  5. MelodyC

    MelodyC Out Of The Brooder

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    No, we haven't had them very long. We inherited them when we purchased the coop. It took us two weeks to get the coop put back together and they were in a temporary home for those weeks. They have had their old coop back for almost a week now. We've been trying to get them in before it's dark, as the cougar has been coming through. I think for the most part, they all get along pretty good. We've been letting them free range during the day.
     
  6. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

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    A few days in their new coop (in the sense that they were elsewhere for a couple of weeks) could well explain it. I would suggest that there is no harm in double checking your set up and observing for signs suggested by members above.

    All the best
    CT
     
  7. MelodyC

    MelodyC Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks!
     
  8. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

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    No probs!
     
  9. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    I would agree with CTKen. They have forgotten their old coop and need to learn it all over again.
     
  10. MelodyC

    MelodyC Out Of The Brooder

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    Last night when I headed out, they were all up in their coop roosting away.
     

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