Hens roosting in the wrong spot.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by GSPx2, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. GSPx2

    GSPx2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2013
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    I have a small piece of 2x3 in front of my nesting box to use as a step and I have a 4 foot roosting bar on the other side if the coop. 2 nights ago I noticed the hens were roosting in the nesting box. So last night I closed off the nesting box and sure enough they wanted to get in the nesting box but couldn't. So they stayed on the "step" that helps them get in the nesting box.

    Is there anything I can do to get them to use the roosting bar? It's about a foot off the coop floor and by a window. Could the window be a problem?

    I even put one of the hens on it yesterday so she could see what to do but she wouldn't go back on it.
     
  2. CedarAcres

    CedarAcres Sunny Side Up

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    My Coop
    You can place them all on the roost each night to give them the proper idea. But I'd also look at the roost & see if there is something about it that is making them not want to use it. The window could be it. Although our roosts have always been by a window. You can try hanging a bit of spare fabric over the window to block it off to see if that changes their minds. One foot off the floor might be too low for them to be roosting on. They like to roost on the highest spot, so you can try raising the bar as well. It is their instinct to roost at night to get away from the predators. So the higher they are, the safer they feel.
     
  3. CosmoTheRooster

    CosmoTheRooster Out Of The Brooder

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    From my experiences, feel more secure when they are higher off the floor. Is your nest box step higher than your roost? I had my perches low and my chickens wouldn't use them. I raised them up to about 4.5 feet off the ground, and started setting them on there every night. I had to make a few "ladder" perches so they could hop up there, because I clip my chickens wings to keep them from flying out of my backyard. Just raise your perches, make sure they can get to it. You might have to put them on the perch until they get the idea.

    -Cosmo
     
  4. GSPx2

    GSPx2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The step is lower then the perch. The perch is a 2x3 with the 2 inch as the up side. Should I make the 3 inch the up side so there's more room for them to stand on it?
     
  5. CosmoTheRooster

    CosmoTheRooster Out Of The Brooder

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    I think that should be fine as long as its comfortable on their feet, having smooth edges. I have 2" dowels, and smoothed out 2 x 4's. As I said though, It would be beneficial to raise the perch.
     
  6. CedarAcres

    CedarAcres Sunny Side Up

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    Mar 18, 2013
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    I agree with cosmo.. as long as its smooth for their feet and comfortable. I would still try raising the roost up higher off the ground.
     
  7. GSPx2

    GSPx2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'll try to raise it. My only problem is that my coop isn't that tall. So they may only have 12 - 15 inches from the perch to stand up right now. I need to change it up till I find what they like.
     
  8. racinchickins

    racinchickins Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You may want to turn your roosts. I experimented with 2x4s with mine. Some wide side up and some narrow side up. The girls picked wide side up every time.
     
  9. CosmoTheRooster

    CosmoTheRooster Out Of The Brooder

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    That's funny, my chickens like the narrow side of a 2 x 4. Just shows every chicken is different! So your'e going to have to experiment around until they seem comfortable with their perch.
     
  10. CosmoTheRooster

    CosmoTheRooster Out Of The Brooder

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    By the way, this is my perch setup. It's not permanent, but they like i
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