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Chickens won't come home!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jeffluce, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. jeffluce

    jeffluce Hatching

    Aug 18, 2010
    Roswell, GA
    I'm a total newbie in this whole thing. I got five chickens, kept them in a chicken tractor I built, and then let them out a few days ago. I intended to let them free range during the day and then to keep them in the tractor at night. I'm all fenced in, so they're in the backyard, but they are sleeping in the trees at night. It's kind of cool, but I'm worried about predators (obviously) as well as the weather this fall/winter. So, I need some ideas about how to make them come to their home at night. I thought they would know how much time I spent building it, but apparently they do not care. They are about 4 months old.
  2. gmendoza

    gmendoza Songster

    Mar 23, 2010
    Rock Hill,SC
    Pu their food into the tractor,then when they are all in,keep them there for a month.This will teach them to remember where to go at night.then try to free range again.
  3. ducks4you

    ducks4you Songster

    Jan 20, 2009
    East Central Illinois
    [​IMG], jeffluce!
    You CAN catch them. I grab mine from above, then hold them like a football. My DOG showed me how to grab their tail feathers and catch them THAT way, too. Catch one at a time, and put 'em back in their tractor.
    People forget to tell you how many birds they lose when they free range. ONLY the ones that have really good enclosed back yards don't lose any birds to that. They have a tractor. Keep them in it and move it around. That's good enough. They will still love you.
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2010
  4. jeffluce

    jeffluce Hatching

    Aug 18, 2010
    Roswell, GA
    My son and I spent about 45 minutes this morning trying to catch them. It was pretty stinking hilarious. I'm gonna try the food in the tractor and keep them there for a while longer. Will report progress as it happens. Thanks so much.
  5. AnnainMD

    AnnainMD Songster

    Feb 1, 2010
    Eldersburg, MD
    I kept mine in for 3 days (but they have a coop in an enclosed run) so they would learn where to roost at night. I still had to catch them a few times but after a few days, they went in by themselves. With free-ranging, you may want to try keeping them in their coop for a week or so prior to letting them free-range again. Good luck!
  6. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Crowing

    May 8, 2007
    Make sure their roosting area is comfortable, too. Not too hot and stuffy, roost is comfortable for their feet, roost not too close to the wall so that their tails are bumping into the wall, that kind of thing. Other than that, they just need to learn to sleep in there and have it become a habit.

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