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getting chickens in at night.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by nathanmouse, Oct 2, 2014.

  1. nathanmouse

    nathanmouse Out Of The Brooder

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    So I'm hoping to get maybe a dozen hens and a rooster sometime soon, some orpingtons, wyandottes and a couple silkies, if breeds matter. As well as maybe half a dozen ducks, Indian runners, and some mallards. I've chickens and ducks before, so I'm good for that! And I've got a new coop! One that doesn't have holes big enough for full grown roosters, and the front wall stays attached to the coop when you open the door! The old coop was awful. I opened the door one day and was nearly flattened by the front wall toppling over. So anyways! Big big improvement! So I know how to keep poultry well, but one problem I've always had was getting them in at night. I had to go after them with nets, which didn't exactly make them more fond of me. And I don't like it either. So does anyone know a good way to get them in at night? Keeping in mind they're going to be free ranging on 2 acres? Any help is appreciated!
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2014
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    First I must say I'm not a fan of keeping chickens and waterfowl together. The waterfowl just make too much of a watery mess to suit chickens, especially if you are starting out with ducklings and chicks.

    Best way to train them to go in at night? Keep them locked in for the first week that you own them - no pen time, no free ranging, coop only. Once they get the idea that the coop is a safe place to be at night, instinct should take over and they will head to "home" each evening. You may have a few that don't get the idea right off the bat. My husband keeps a piece of PVC pipe out by my coops that he uses to herd birds that are reluctant to return to their coop in the evenings. Now all the birds have to do is see that stick and they know it means it's coop time.

    If a week doesn't do the trick, repeat.
     
  3. nathanmouse

    nathanmouse Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks very much! about wate
    Thanks very much! about water fowl though, would it work if i used one of those water containers where they can only stick their bill in it? not sure what theyre called, but the kind that has a water container in the center, and a channel of water surrounding it? hope you understand what im talking about.
     
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    In my opinion, no. Ducks will find a way to make a mess with a tablespoon of water (only slightly kidding). You may want to head over to the waterfowl section of the forum and get opinions there. I keep my ducks totally seperate. When I had geese I kept them with my larger ducks.
     
  5. nathanmouse

    nathanmouse Out Of The Brooder

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    So I found what I think might be a solution. P. Allen Smith has a thing where he makes a 2 foot by 2 foot frame out of wood and a wire mesh over it an it keeps the ducks from being able to get water all over the floor. Think that would work? I only have one coop.
     
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Can't hurt to try it.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    I've seen those here too...they'll still splash water on the ground they just can't get at it to make a mud wallow.

    I don't have ducks and never have and probably never will but from what I've read(alot) they make a terrible water mess and their droppings are also wet and prolific.
    Most folks who keep ducks strongly suggest that they be kept in separate housing from chickens.
     

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