Ok - this may be a dumb question, but I was rambeling on to someone the other day about how I was ancious to start working on my coop/run so I could get it filled up before cold weather hits - and I mentioned that I plan to let the girls out in the morning and put them back up in the evening. I was told that this was impossible since it's dark when I leave in the mornings and I'd just be stirring them up for no reason. I know there could be issues with dark-skulking critters, but my coop is going to be inside the fenced in yard and although I've seen signs of things in the barn and pastures, I've never seen anything inside the yard with the dogs. Also, my dogs have helped me raise many little baby things (kittens, possumms, birds, etc) so I'm not worried about them messing with the girls either. So here's the dumb question. Can I open the coop at the crack of dawn and leave the girls free roaming all day (till 3 or 4)??? When I see people talking about letting the hens wander the yard, I assume they're just loose. Am I supposed to only let them wander when I can stand out there with them?????