Chickens won't go in coop at night!!!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by RIArmySGT, May 14, 2013.

  1. jeds chickens

    jeds chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    My chickens didn't go in either but I put in a red party bulb and they have gone in for about 95% of the time. Any source of light would work and the food idea would probably work too.
     
  2. hamnermitch

    hamnermitch Out Of The Brooder

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    I have ten Australorp pullets that are five weeks old. I moved them into their permanent home two days ago. Only three or four will venture out of the coop. The rest stay huddled up inside. I don't lock them in the coop hoping they will venture out on their own in the mornings. I keep food and water both inside and out in the run. SShould I do something different with the feed or just leave them alone to do their own thing? I do gather up the ones that come out and put them back in at night. I have never raised chickens before so this is all new to me. I do have to say; however, that I'm having a lot of fun with them.
     
  3. homegrownchix

    homegrownchix Out Of The Brooder

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    I ended up closing up the whole flock in the coop for like 2 days straight during a storm and that seemed to have reset their habit. Now I find them in the coop after dark without the cat and mouse game.
    .. I guess the trick is getting them all in at once!
     
  4. sandovaljose214

    sandovaljose214 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You should keep them In the coop/run for a week. Also try putting a light in the run and when It gets extreamly dark they will go to the light. If they still dont get in the coop try training them buy giving them treats.
     
  5. jlund2

    jlund2 New Egg

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    Dec 28, 2013
    Thank you! Maybe I should do that. Because they have always gone in the coop after they started to a couple months ago and it is -16 below right now where we live and maybe the inside with the red light is colder in the coop then outside because we have 2 bright heating lights in a nice area of the shed/outside part of the coop. Maybe they are warming outside than in because they have white lights outside and 1 red inside. The rooster hates even the red light so we can't put more heating lights. He just crows during the night since we had to put the red heat light in. Sigh......I just wish it would get WARMER!
     
  6. jlund2

    jlund2 New Egg

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    Dec 28, 2013
    Thanks so much for the advice. We just tried the treats. We hung cabbage last night and will be putting pomegranite seeds in there tonight. It's just so cold here I think its screwing up EVERYTHING!!! They seem to being do okay though. We got one more egg then we have been getting in the last 2 weeks since they starting laying. Wish me luck, hahaha.
     
  7. FrozenWings

    FrozenWings Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 20, 2013
    Your birds will flock to the location with light at night, except the rooster. If you wish your birds to all return to their coop, either provide a white light inside the coop, or eliminate the white light outside the coop. Since this is their routine you may have to help them with a new one as they may just sit there and wait for the light to come on. LOL silly chickens! The red light provides little if no light to your birds, they cannot see using the red light. The red light only provides heat. Your breed of bird can help determine rather you really need the heat or not, but...

    My suggestion is to remove the heat sources completely. As long as your birds have a place they can go that keeps them dry and out of the elements they will be fine. We experience cold temperatures this time of year as well. For my flock anything above 0 degrees Fahrenheit I give them the option to go outside of the coop, anything below I make them stay in, and that is due to frostbite. Providing an artificial heat source can actually help create conditions for frostbite with your birds. Keep them dry and out the elements and they will be fine with no heat. I find myself more stressed out than my birds are during cold snaps. I am always worrying about them too.

    Some say that egg production is less effected if an artificial light is not supplied and the birds are allowed to adjust with their natural surroundings. I am raising a flock from birth so I am testing that theory, but so far at 8 months the birds have not produced any eggs. Perhaps next year will be a better test as maturity also contributes to the first eggs and these birds' waddles and combs still are too small and pink, which suggests they are not ready to lay even if we had longer days and warmer temperatures.

    I also think your rooster is calling for his ladies to join him in the coop. I am not so sure he is protesting your light or heat source. As long as it does give them some hours of darkness. These are only my suggestions and what works for me. I am sure your chickens are very happy but I bet your rooster would be happier with his ladies with him :)

    -Frozen Wings
     
  8. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j True BYC Addict

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    It's possible that putting the light in the coop threw them off - it's something new, and they don't like change. I would take the light out for a couple of reasons - and I'm from MN, don't have a heated or insulated coop, so I do have some experience with the cold. First, your chickens have down coats on. It could be that the coop is too warm for them with the lights. Try this. Put on your coat, hat, snowpants, gloves and boots and go outside for even a few minutes. Then come back in and leave everything on. How comfortable are you? You have the option of removing all your layers. Your chickens don't. Another thing to think about - I don't know how stable your electricity is during a blizzard, but ours can be sketchy. So, you have a coop of chickens that have not been able to properly acclimate to the cold, and your electricity goes out, or the bulb burns out in the night. Where are your chickens? In the cold and not able to handle it. I would also shut off the heat lamps outside. I think you're throwing away good money on your electric bill, but that's your call entirely. (I agree - it would be nice if it would warm up some. Like a LOT!)
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2013
  9. jlund2

    jlund2 New Egg

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    Dec 28, 2013
    Thanks for the suggestions. I get it and yes I am thinking now that is the problem because we used to keep it lit in the coop only
    and they would go in there and then I would shut off the light. But do you still think with it -26 below we don't need a heat lamp? Yikes.
     
  10. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j True BYC Addict

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    On the MN prairie.
    That's your choice entirely. My chickens will not have a heat lamp. They are out of the wind, dry, and their coop has good ventilation so there is no humidity build-up in the coop. The ends of their combs may get nipped, but they'll be fine. I have yet to see a problem in my flock.
     

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