Chicks in the run tomorrow, a couple of questions.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Tomhusker, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. Tomhusker

    Tomhusker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, it has been a few days since we brought our fist ever flock home and placed them in their new coop. We were told they were going on 8 weeks old, but the good folks on this site have shared their knowledge and experience and we now know that the chicks are probably only 4 or 5 weeks old. No worries, what ever, they are still cool. Anyway, I wanted them to get familiar with the new digs, take a few days to adjust to life outside of a brooder cage, before I opened the pop door and let them out into the 4x12 run we have for them.
    The chicks are not real tame, thought they are starting to tolerate me sitting in the doorway of the coop. I don't want to force them outside, I'd like to see them go out on their own.

    Will they do this? Also, will I have to wrangle them back into the coop at dusk or will they seek shelter as it gets dark? Should I put a light in the coop to encourage them to return? The food and water will remain inside for now.
     
  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    They very well may not venture out on the first day. If you have an adventurous one or two though, the rest may follow...lol. I still swear by turning on a light inside the coop about an hour or so before dusk to teach chick(en)s to go inside at night on their own. So I'd try that once they get use to going out into the run and spending time there... Good luck! [​IMG]
     
  3. Littletonchicks

    Littletonchicks Out Of The Brooder

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    I have had mine in the coop but in a dog kennel. Mine are only 3 weeks old but today I let them out of the dog kennel and opened the door to the run and away they went. A few stayed behind but the rest went right out side. One even caught a worm and had the rest of them chasing after her. I live in Maine and it was sunny and warm today and they loved it. I went down tonight to check on them (after closing the door) and they were all standing at the door. Yours will go out in time. And once they do, they will love it.
     
  4. Tomhusker

    Tomhusker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the help. I will go out and buy one of those battery operated push lights, as the coop is small an not wired for electricity. That should be sufficient for them to find their way back at dusk..... I hope. [​IMG]
     
  5. felidaet

    felidaet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A light in the evening really helps train them to return to the coop. A couple of nights ago I did not turn it on before dark because I had to work late. Even though it was dark they were all still walking around in the run. I turned on the light and they were all in the coop within a couple of minutes. I have been leaving it on all night but I think tomorrow evening I will start turning it off after they are settled in the coop and I have the door to the run closed. I am sure they will complain a lot for the first couple of nights when I turn it off.
     
  6. Tomhusker

    Tomhusker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, yesterday I opened the pop door early in the morning and left them to their own amusements. After a couple of hours I checked and not a single one had ventured out. My wife suggested that the ramp is too steep, but I am pretty sure that is not the issue. I have seen other on here that look more so.

    I decided to hand deliver them through the door and onto the ramp. The first one hit the ramp and scooted right back in. [​IMG]

    So I began to grab and toss them out the door fast enough that they had no choice but to go down the ramp. Once on the grass it was like they were at an amusement park! They stayed out all day and seemed to love every minute of it.
    I turned on a light in the coop before sunset and waited to see if they would return. An hour after dark they were huddled together in the run. Our run is small so DW had to go in after them. Normally they scatter, but it was like they were waiting to be picked up and taken home, they stayed all together as she picked them up and put them thru the door.
    This morning, same thing. Opened pop door, waited a couple of hours, nothing. Ended up taking them out again.

    The ramp is lower than the pop door, so maybe they cannot see it, but I know there were a couple sitting up on the door trim looking out before going back in. Am I just being impatient in the mornings? How long does it take for chicks to get the idea that they are supposed to be doing this on their own?
     
  7. enggass

    enggass Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Battery operated push light? What are these and where might I find them...?
     
  8. Tomhusker

    Tomhusker Chillin' With My Peeps

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  9. geojane42

    geojane42 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Why don't you try some solar powered christmas tree lights? That way you don't have to turn them on and off or go through batteries. They'll turn themselves on automatically at dusk and will turn off when they run out of juice. Think i'm gonna do that too come to think of it. My girls put themselves to bed long before dark but I just want pretty lights on my coop [​IMG]
     
  10. Tomhusker

    Tomhusker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just want them to go back in the coop at dark......

    I'll put in cable TV if that'll get them to go in.
     

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