Golden Laced Polish - Sleeping outside on top of nesting boxes

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MusiGal, Sep 4, 2014.

  1. MusiGal

    MusiGal In the Brooder

    Mar 1, 2013
    Chesapeake, VA
    Hi, everyone!

    You all have been such a wonderful help to me, I'd like your advice/opinions again. I have a Golden Laced Polish who is and always has been very skittish (even though we keep her head feathers trimmed). As you can well imagine, she is at the bottom of the pecking order. She was one of five hens, but the only Gold Laced Polish...the others are listed in my signature. Three weeks ago, I added 5 RSLs and they have integrated very nicely. I was so hoping that perhaps that would elevate poor Ava a little, but it is not to be. Even though they are a year younger than my original 5, including Ava, they are the same size as Ava...even a bit larger. She is not a bantam, just on the small side for chickens. Anyway, I have a coop inside a completely enclosed run. There's plenty of room inside the coop for all 10 hens, but many times she ends up getting chased out of the coop or she leaves to avoid a conflict. There have been many times that I go to check on them (since I have the new ones) and she'll be outside of the coop, up on top of the nest boxes (where I would collect the eggs). Each time, I have taken her off and made her go back inside. She stays and seems to do okay. I wish I had built a walk-in coop so that I could place her on a roost, but I didn't so she's left to her own devices once I return her to the coop.

    I guess my question is this: Since the coop itself is housed within a completely enclosed run (pictured below), should I just leave her outside? About the only evidence I've seen of anything breaching the perimeter is mole trails. The perimeter has about 6" deep of cement with chicken wire and hardware cloth on four sides and the top. One side is completely against a 6' wood fence. The coop sits in the middle of the run.

    On another note, we're going out of town on vacation next week and I have a good friend who will be coming by to check on them and collect eggs once a day. The bad thing about that is that she will only check them once a day at the end of the day. They are used to being let out of the run to roam the backyard all day and then go back in at night. They will be "cooped" up in the run for an entire week and I worry about poor Ava. Any thoughts?

    Oh yes, she went broody a couple of months ago. I was able to break her and then she went into a brief molt. She seems fine, but still hasn't begun laying again. I think she's too stressed.

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    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014

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