Heavy Breeds and Roosting


10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
I'm getting some BO and RIR hens this year, and wondering how tall the roost should be since, from what I've read, they are considered 'heavy breeds'. My current plans make it about three feet high (technically, five feet from the floor, but I have a landing two feet up which they use to get to the roosts). I had some RIR/Leghorn crosses that seemed to handle it fine, but wanted to run this question by once before I get these new hens.

Any advice is appreciated


Free Ranging
11 Years
Feb 2, 2009
Southeast Louisiana
I don't have either, but I'd suspect the RIR could handle it no problem. The BO's should be a little heavier. You will see many posts on here that the 3 feet is no problem for BO's, but if your coop is a little tight, I'd provide another step about half way up from the platform. They flap as they jump and I like to make it easier for them to not hit anything.


11 Years
Apr 9, 2008
Minneapolis, MN
My Coop
My roost is at 3 ft and my big heinie BOs get up and down just fine - no ramp. I have deep litter, so it's soft when they land (with a thud). Previous poster is correct - gotta give them some room to jump.

ETA - Just re-read your original post... sorry... a 5 ft. roost might be pushing the issue. As long as they used the landing they would probably be fine, but if they didn't, you might have some injuries from them jumping down. I don't know what kind of landing you're talking about, but I don't know if I'd leave them with a narrow or hard surface to jump down upon. They're pretty big. Sorry for the edit.
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11 Years
Jan 29, 2008
southern tier,NY
I like mine 2-3 ft high.They won't have a problem getting up but for a heavy bird it is hard on their legs and feet getting down any higher than that.You can tell when you are outside and can hear them hit the floor it sounds like my 40 lb daughter jumping off the couch. Will

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