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Dust bath fear.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by blits0927, Sep 4, 2015.

  1. blits0927

    blits0927 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 31, 2015
    I've been letting my chickens free range, but they're starting to go to far during the day. So a couple of weeks ago we started just letting them out a little later in the afternoon. This seems to be working to keep them a little closer to home. Since they're spending more time in their run now and with winter and snow coming, I wanted to make a dust bath in the run for them. So they wouldn't feel closed in, I used a wide, shallow pan thats big enough to hold all 3 chickens. They're afraid of it. I've raised them from day old chicks, they're now 19 weeks. Up to this point I've been able to get them over being fearful of benign things they need to be used to just by sitting near the offending object and enticing them to check it out by talking softly to them and luring them over with small treats. It's always worked.... until now. They're just not having the dust bath thing. They're stressed and running back and forth in a small area of the run. They want to come to me, but will only come so close before they go back to running in that small area. Last night the hens refused to come in the run and coop. I had to pick them up and put them in. The rooster would go in the run but was afraid to come close enough to the dust bath to go in the coop. I was able to talk him into the coop and, once in, they settled right down. But I'm not sure how to get them over this fear. What do some of you do to get your chickens over fears? Will they just get used to it?
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Just give them time..... and leave them to it.
    They may be feeling your anxiety over the matter.
    Maybe throw treats around and in the dust bath...then walk away.
     
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  3. blits0927

    blits0927 Out Of The Brooder

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    I figured they'd initially be a little wary of it because it was new, but would warm up to it as soon as they realized what it was. That's what they usually do with new stuff. I was surprised when they were actually fearful of it. I'll try throwing some scratch in there and see what they think.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Some new things they get used to very quickly, others not so much.
     
  5. Sundance x4

    Sundance x4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 26, 2015
    Anytime I put something new or even move something around in my chickens run, they act like, Omg! Omg! What is that, that's scary! Wait...can we eat it? Lol! I have the same kind of dust bath and they were afraid at first but now they use it all the time.
     
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  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    LMAO!![​IMG]
     
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  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

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    This is so true. Every week my Honey dumps grass clippings in the pens when he mows. And yes, each and every time the birds freak out like aliens are invading [​IMG]. bless their hearts.
     
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  8. blits0927

    blits0927 Out Of The Brooder

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    Well its good to know my little feather dusters aren't traumatized for life....Incidentally, I noticed the other day that I'll need to refill the bath soon because it's contents have apparently been flung to the 4 corners of the earth LoL
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Yep, they can fling stuff for sure!
    Apparently they've gotten over their fear.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. blits0927

    blits0927 Out Of The Brooder

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    Yeah, they've adjusted LoL
     

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