Help, my chicks are making a huge, wet mess in the coop!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by donnap1967, Aug 31, 2008.

  1. donnap1967

    donnap1967 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 15, 2008
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    My chicks are 7 weeks and 9 weeks old. I put them in the coop we built outside for the first time a few days ago. Every night the 9 week old silkies are fine as they chose a nice spot in one corner of the coop to sleep in. However, my 6 assorted standards, who are the 7 week olds, have decided they want to sleep in the corner near the waterer. Once they all pile up there someone in the pile eventually pushes the waterer to the side and the whole thing empties out into the coop shavings!! They end up wet, sleeping in wet shavings.

    This afternoon I put a box in another corner hoping to coax them to sleep over there but no luck. Tonight I went to check on them and lock down the coop for the night and once again the same wet mess. I emptied all the wet shavings out and dried the floor. I took out the now empty waterer and left it outside the coop till morning. Then with flashlight in hand I picked up each one of the six culprits and tried placing them up on the roost. I know they can get up there because they hop up and off during the day. As I placed each one up on the roost they kept jumping down but I was persistent and kept going until they were all there and quickly took the flashlight out so they wouldn't jump down again (I hope) in the dark.

    How do I break them of the habit of sleeping on the floor under the waterer?! I tried putting a cement block under the waterer today too, hoping they wouldn't sleep against it but still had the same problem.

    I need to teach them to sleep on the roost and maybe remove the waterer each night after dark until they get the idea I guess. I can't afford to keep replacing shavings nightly.

    Heellllllpppppp! [​IMG]
     
  2. Dar

    Dar Overrun With Chickens

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    can you hang the waterer or move it a little to the side ti give them rom to sleep?
     
  3. donnap1967

    donnap1967 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The waterer is hanging from a beam in the ceiling. I cant move it anywhere else. The floor plan just doesn't allow room in any other area to hang it from. Maybe I could hang it a little bit higher but I don't know if raising it another inch or two will help the problem. I think they will still tip it to the side if they sleep there.
     
  4. Dar

    Dar Overrun With Chickens

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    what about raising it enough so that they can sleep and have maybe ladders/ramps to get to the water.maybe raise it like 6"..I am just brain storming here...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 31, 2008
  5. Beekissed

    Beekissed True BYC Addict

    Just hang it higher at night and let it down in the morning?
     
  6. donnap1967

    donnap1967 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 15, 2008
    Northern NJ
    Just peeked real quick with a flashlight. The silkies are in their spot. Five standards of the six appear to be on the roost yet. Maybe four. Didnt want to upset them with the light too much to look closer. One is definately on the coop floor near the box.

    I think my plan is going to be placing them on the roost at night until they get the idea and if I have to, remove the water until sun comes up, for now.

    After they start sleeping on the roost this problem should go away and I can leave the water in at night.
     

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