Hens not wanting to free range

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by flockof4, Dec 4, 2011.

  1. flockof4

    flockof4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 10, 2010
    Webster Groves, MO
    About a week ago, my hens decided to stay in and around the coop instead of wandering the yard. The only significant change that I see is that all the trees have lost their leaves and there's less cover for them to hide under. They seem healthy, maybe just a little lethargic. We do have lots of hawks and even an owl has showed up recently. Could they just be feeling vulnerable and wanting to stay covered?
  2. trailchick

    trailchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    I agree with your opinion...
    If they normally free ranged regularly, then I would bet something spooked them and they now feel safer within the coop...
    Depending on how afraid they got, it will take some time before they want to venture outside again. Keep the coop door open as you normally do, they'll go out when they are ready.
    Also, the weather may have gotten to them. Mine dont care to go out when it's bad.
  3. stoopid

    stoopid Chicken Fairy Godmother

    Aug 3, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    Yes, I think they know what's flying up above them.
    Make sure they have things to hide under for cover.
  4. kota1369

    kota1369 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 17, 2009
    Kansas City, MO
    Mine wont come into the yard if there is snow. They stay up in their area and enjoy the dryer area. If there is snow in their run I have to lay straw down or they will not come out of the coop. I do not have food and water in the coop, so I need to always make sure they have a path. The way it is set up now I should rarely have to do that. ******* crossing fingers ***********
    They also like you said, may feel an "air" threat. I think they will come out when they feel comfortable.
  5. Ducks and Banny hens

    Ducks and Banny hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 22, 2011
    On a little Farm.
    Quote:Oh, goodness! I have had so much fun with that fact! I throw my hat or a paper airplane overhead of my birds, and the rooster shrieks and the hens run for cover! It's quite amusing![​IMG]

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