Do I need to train these chicks to go back into the roost at night?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by barley00, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. barley00

    barley00 New Egg

    Apr 14, 2009
    eastern long island, ny
    Hi I've got some ~6 week old chicks that I moved out to the coop a little over a week ago. They managed to work their way out of the roost box on a few days when the weather was decent but have not seemed to figure out how to get back in or that they'll have a much more comfortable night if they do go back into the roost box. I have had to go out there and place them all back into the roost box each evening. I have a nice ramp at about 45 degrees with plenty of steps up to the roost box.

    So the questions: at what time should I expect them to go to roost? do I need to train them to go back to roost? If so, how? If not, how long do they take to figure it out?

    Need to get this figured out before next Thur. as I am headed out of town for a long weekend and will have in-laws tending to the chicks, would rather have them come by once a day to top up food and water and not have to deal with putting chicks back into the roost box

    Thanks in advance for your help.
  2. paddock36

    paddock36 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 24, 2008
    Ocala, Florida
    We have a light in our coop which seemed to help. We only had to put them in the coop one time and after that as long as the light is on they go in at night without any problem. Maybe that will help you too.
  3. RendonRoo

    RendonRoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2009
    ft. worth
    Worked the same for mine. I turn the light on just before dark and turn it off when i close them up after dark.
  4. Chicken Rustler

    Chicken Rustler Grabs em n runs

    I am soo glad to find this as I was about to ask the same thing. I have 14 8 week old chicks and just put them in the coop with the 3 hens last night. Well when I went to check on them just after dark all but one were in the coop and that last one was out in the covered run so I put it in the coop and locked em all in for the night. Well tonight when I went out to check on em there were 8 in the coop so I open the door to go into the outdoor run and as I open the door and step in I hear wings flapping above my head. The silly thing was roosted on the top of the door about 8' off the ground. Let me tell ya that scared me so bad I almost had big alligator tears running down the inside of my pant leggs! [​IMG] Then I went out in the run and there were 4 more in 1 corner and 1 in another. So I packed em all back into the coop and locked em in fer the night. When will they learn?
  5. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    A light inside the coop worked fine for me, just a 60W bulb, and even that may be more than is needed. They do not see well at all in the dark, I have read. Trick for me was to wait long enough, til near dark, well after sunset, and they would all be inside.
  6. barley00

    barley00 New Egg

    Apr 14, 2009
    eastern long island, ny
    I forgot that detail, I do have a light in the coop for warmth. We've had a few days of rain and they didn't even come out of the roost box recently, we'll see what happens today. Thanks a lot for the replies.

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