Hen that hates to roost

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by CartierChicken, Jun 11, 2011.

  1. CartierChicken

    CartierChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My flock is small, with just 2 laying hens, 1 rooster, and then a broody with 19 chicks. The broody and chicks sleep on the floor of the coop. The rooster and 1 hen on the roost, but the other laying hen is always looking for somewhere to lay and sleep, but won't use the floor. I have had to net off all possible areas for her to lay-roost. The nesting box is small, but I see her eyeing it at night, when it is time to go to sleep. Why would a hen hate to roost?
     
  2. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    How high are the roosts compared with the nest boxes? The roosts should be higher than the nest boxes. Also what are you using as roosts? Do you have a picture you can post?
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2011
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Sometimes another chicken is very mean and aggressive on the roost. It is part of the pecking order thing, but some chickens, usually hens, can be very brutal about it. I've had young, broody-raised, fully integrated 15 week old chicks go from roosting in the coop with the big chickens to trying to roost outside of the coop to get away from a brutal hen on the roost. That Buff Orp would leave her normal roosting spot to go brutalize the young chickens. That may have something to do with the roosting problem.
     
  4. CartierChicken

    CartierChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Besides the rooster, Matilda is second in command. She only shares the roost with Isabelle and Brollan. She won't even roost on the branch outside. I checked her feet, and they look perfect. She just seems to prefer sitting instead of standing. And about the roost level, I had not thought about that. The next box is at the same height. She has not, however, slept in there yet, I just see her eyeing it. The actual roost bar is 55mm wide. I used the same measurements the people had from where I got the chickens. The other two seem to be happy with the roost. Matilda will use it, if nothing else is available, she just tries everything else until she has no choice.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    The 55 mm is plenty wide enough. Don't worry about that part. Some of mine prefer sections of tree branches that are even smaller than that, although they have other choices.

    She's not a Silkie is she? Some Silkies hate to roost.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2011
  6. CartierChicken

    CartierChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:She is a Leghorn. I don't know how to put it, she just seems lazy.
     

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