How do I get traumatized chickens to go back to their coop?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Acorns-2-Oaks, Dec 13, 2013.

  1. Acorns-2-Oaks

    Acorns-2-Oaks New Egg

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    Mar 2, 2012
    I had a happy trio of bantams that had 5 happy little chicks. They lived in a cute little coop inside a 10x10x10 chain link fence and were let out in the day. They happily went in at dusk every night. All happy until... One night something got inside and killed two young adults and one of the originals. I nearly killed the rooster. He lost all of his tail feathers in the fight. They started roosting in a tree in our front yard and refused to go back in the coop. I understand completely, but something got the other two original hens and nearly tore the rooster's foot off. He lost a toe. :( They only moved up the tree higher to about 30 feet. I cleaned the carnage from the coop and moved it closer to our house still with the chain link fence surround. They refused to go in. I waited. A week or so later I lured them in with food and they spent the night locked in. ( I had always locked the coop and the pen at night before as well.) They went out in the morning and won't go back. I don't mind them in the tree except for the freezing rain we've had lately.

    I'm sorry for the long story. Is there any way to get them to stay in their warm coop again?
     
  2. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2013
    Did you secure the area where the thing got in? If it is still trying to get in at night they won't want to go back in. If it got dinner once and is still alive it will go back and try again, sometimes with family in tow. The coop and run must be secured and nothing trying to get in and then it takes about a week of getting them in there before they trust going in on their own to spend a whole night.
     
  3. Acorns-2-Oaks

    Acorns-2-Oaks New Egg

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    Mar 2, 2012
    We still don't know how it got in. There was no evidence other than lots of feathers. When we moved the pen, we added so underground wire about 8 inches straight down. Our neighbor saw 2 foxes in their yard the same night so we're assuming that's what got them. It's hunting season here and we are in the middle of trees, trees and more trees... and a few fields.[​IMG] There is a lot of logging in the area as well. All sorts of animals have been scared out of their homes. We've had bear, coyotes, foxes, raccoons, opossums, hawks and eagles all within a few miles in the last few months. I don't blame them for being wary. I just worry about the cold 30 feet up in the tree. They were somewhat protected when there were leaves on the tree. But now there is nothing.
     

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