Cold hens sleeping in nest boxes?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chick-habit, Dec 26, 2016.

  1. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2016
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    Los Angeles is actually experiencing a winter this year. It gets down to 42 at night. That's cold for us!! The last two nights our Cochin hens have slept in the nest box. Is it because they're cold? They were born in April and this is the coldest weather they've been in. How cold is too cold for them? I don't want them to get sick or worse because of the weather.
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    Chickens normally start sleeping in the nestboxes because there's not enough roost space, or the roosts are uncomfortable for some reason. Another reason is they aren't feeling well like during a molt or because they are low on the pecking order and are trying to get away from the dominant members. Some observations at roost time can sometimes help determine the problem. Otherwise blocking the nest at night can help break the habit.
     
  3. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2016
    los angeles, ca
    We only have 3 hens and one is in a nest indoors so she can foster some chicks. I'd have her in the coop but it's been raining and I don't want her on the ground in her nest if the yard floods. We also have rats creeping around that I've been catching and I don't want one to manage to get inside the coop and hurt her. I'm going to add some wire mesh to areas they can get into before I add her to a nest in the coop.
    The other 2 have sleeping cuddled up in the nest box ever since the weather got colder. If they're cold is bad for them to sleep in the nest box to keep warm?
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2016
  4. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member

    I being a softy have started letting one old hen, sleep in a nest box, but it has been really cold when I did, like 70 degrees colder than your 42 degrees.

    I know it is bad to do, but she spends a lot of time in the nest box, she has most likely not laid an egg in two years and it makes her feel young to sit in one...



    42 degrees is not cold for a chicken I will not let this one sleep in the box if it gets above freezing.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2016
  5. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2016
    los angeles, ca

    I'm spoiling them, huh? [​IMG] I'm like 5 seconds away from buying them sweaters.
     
  6. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member





    :yuckyuck. :lau
     
  7. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member





    :yuckyuck. :lau
     
  8. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2016
    los angeles, ca
    Ah. They're not coming out this morning! They're broody! I have 3 broody chickens!


    We get to sleep in for the next few days!!!!! [​IMG]
     
  9. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Overrun With Chickens

    It's not likely your chickens both went broody in one night.

    Kick their butts out and block those nest off after laying is done for the day.

    Put yourself on a down jacket, (go to big 5 if you have to), and step outside to see how toasty you are. [​IMG] Those girls are fine! They are wearing down jackets. [​IMG]

    Sleeping in the nest box is a bad habit and can cause your eggs to be poopy. [​IMG] The amount of poo on my boards is crazy how much they do during the night. Broodies don't poo like that, they hold it until they go out for their daily ritual.

    Yes, I remember those balmy 70+ degree Christmases of So Cal... shorts and t-shirt. So 42 seems cold. The girls may stay in to avoid the rain for a little while. But they will be up and about before long (probably, seems animals and kids will do what they can to make a liar out of me sometimes). [​IMG]
     
  10. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2016
    los angeles, ca
    Believe it or not they are definitely broody. They're always broody!!! They're even doing the puffed up head down and tail feathers up thing and they don't squat when I go to pick them up. Also there's the icky broody poops in the yard. They hung out in the yard this morning and went right back into the nest when i left for work! I'll take the pine shavings out and the wire bottom of the nest box usually cools them down enough to snap them out of it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2016

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