chickens won't roost.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by papacoffee, Jan 7, 2016.

  1. papacoffee

    papacoffee Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 13, 2015
    Southeast Missouri
    I have six black australorp's that are eleven weeks old. That will not roost, they huddle and sleep on the ground. How do you teach them how to roost?
  2. cstronks

    cstronks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2013
    New Jersey
    Ok, this is a common problem with chickens that may not be raised by a mother hen or have older hens in the coop. Basically, they don't have a "role model", so you're going to have to play parent and teach them. No, you do not have to jump on a roost bar, but you'll need to place the birds on the roost bar at night. Essentially, when it is dusky, you'll go out and put them on the roost bar when they go into the coop. If they protest, wait until it is completely dark. Even the most rowdy birds remain motionless at night because chickens have horrible eyesight. Place them on the roost bar at night. They will eventually get the idea. Might take a few days, but they'll get it. Also, make sure your roost bars aren't set too high. They should be able to hop up there pretty easily. The bars can be raised when the hens get older.

    Hope this helps! Best of luck!
    1 person likes this.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    cstronks gives good options for 'training'.

    Is your roost nice and wide?
    Me and my chooks like 2x4's wide side up.

    Is the roost easy to get up to...and easy to get down from without crashing into something?
    Narrow and/or small coops can lack in landing area.

    Do you ever see them up on the roost?
    11 weeks might still be a little early for roosting, still babies and may just want to cuddle on the ground to feel safer.
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by