Girls don't go in their coop


In the Brooder
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
Wadsworth, IL
We built a beautiful 6 x 10 run with a raised coop that is 6 x 4. We think we followed all the rules, well ventilated and separate nesting boxes with marsh hay. The run has a sand floor on top of chicken wire. Within days of being put into their new home they started hanging out under the coop. I had placed the extra marsh hay down there for storage but they had other ideas,they spread it out and live there. All of that is fine, but when they start laying eggs in a month or so am I going to have to crawl under to find them? I have 5 hens. I am guessing it isn't automatic for them to go to the nest boxes to lay. Should I remove all their bedding from underneath?

Thanks for any advice.
Am I understanding that they don't go into their coop at night? You may have to put them in there at dusk for a few nights before they get the idea. Other people advise closing them in the coop for a few days so that they know where "home" is. Hope that helps.
#1 remove bedding from under coop , { that way no real attractive place outside to sleep }put them in the coop for a day or 2 turn on a light about an hour before dusk they won't go in a dark coop , at dusky dark see who is still out put them in . Mine after 2 weeks are going in no light putting themselves to bed so all I do is close up the coop. They are 10 weeks. I don't know I figure you can train chickens like dogs i'm pretty good at that. Anyway that is what worked for me they gotta learn where home is .
I coaxed my girls into their coop for a few nights with shredded cheese or pasta. I'd throw out 3-4 pieces, step back 5 steps, throw some more, etc. until I got them in their coop. I was late one night and didn't go out until almost dark and when I went out, they were already in and on their roost. Now, I just wait! So much easier. As summer goes on, it will be later each night so my bed time will adjust.

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