Eglu automatic door catching chickens

Cluckatar

Crowing
12 Years
Apr 12, 2009
234
399
251
Vashon, WA
Hi all, I haven't posted for many years but after a long hiatus we are raising chicks again. We have an Eglu cube with attached run and an automatic door. The chicks are about six weeks old, and have spent the first three weeks in a brooder indoors and the last three in a large dog crate in a shop. They are learning the ways of living in this new coop. Two nights my daughter had to crawl into the run and catch each of them to manually put them to bed. After that, they have been picking a time and going to bed themselves (hurray!) however, they are not yet good at this. Many fits and starts, one sitting in the doorway blocking the others, etc. We've been manually closing at night and allowing the timer to open it in the morning.

However, tonight one of the college kids decided to "help out" without checking first. They saw the chickens were in, and pushed the button for a manual close. Unfortunately two of the hens were halfway in, got pushed by the door, and one of them had her head stuck in the closing door for a horrifying amount of time while we screamed at each other and tried to figure out what to do. An access hatch in the run right next to that coop door would be SO useful.

My question, is there an over-ride code for a closing door on the Eglu? Has anyone had a chicken injured by the door, or do they figure this stuff out pretty quickly? Thanks much for any ideas.
 

Cluckatar

Crowing
12 Years
Apr 12, 2009
234
399
251
Vashon, WA
Have you contacted the mfg?
I did my research, and then a test last night with a balloon (they have a website video where they use one to show the safety feature) and sure enough, it did trigger the safety release. I felt much better about it after that. The hen was able to pull her head back into the coop the night it caught her, so I think she just waited until the last second and that is why it didn't re-open.

So the short answer, it does have a safety feature that re-opens the door and then tries to close it again designed to deal with a sleepy hen in the doorway. Whew.
 

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