How to get them back in the coop/pen?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by scorwin, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. scorwin

    scorwin In the Brooder

    Jul 4, 2011
    I don't have my chickens yet but I would like to have chickens (3-4) able to free roam just for a couple hours when I'm around. How do you get them back in the coop/pen and will they run away?

  2. louclare

    louclare In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2011
    Our chicks are 4 months old, and for about a month and a half they have been free roaming all day. They do not usually run away from us, because they almost always get treats when we go out. At night, one of the chicks will call for everyone to go in, and they all follow. If they do not goin, bribing them with oats always works for us. [​IMG]
  3. ChicKat

    ChicKat Crowing Premium Member

    Hi scorwin,

    louclare has the 'secret'. Once your chickens know that you are the source of all the treats, they will come running to meet you. Some folks here use a special call or noise, such as 'here chickens' or shaking some pellets or scratch in a can so the chickens get used to the sound and come running.

    When you first get them....don't let them free range. They need to spend a couple of nights in the coop so they know where to go once darkness is approaching. When they associate your coop with their nightly roosting spot, they will go in on their own accord. Hopefully you have a run of some sort or a large enough coop that they can spend a day or two 'confined'.

    Right at the beginning, some folks also use a flashlight or light in the coop to guide the chickens to home-to-roost.

    Get them used to coming to you and even if they are scattered around the yard....when your call or sound that is associated with treats is heard, they will scurry to get their handouts.
  4. Wyo Chick

    Wyo Chick Songster

    With my new pullets I try to keep them in the coop for a couple of days. So they know whree home is. But I still have to put them on the roosts myself for about a week. Then they seem to know where their roost is. When I didn't have a fence to keep them in I would let them out about an hour before dark. I could keep up with where they would go and help them a little!
  5. LilyD

    LilyD Songster

    Jan 24, 2011
    Bristol, VT
    I make sure I go out the same time each night or close to it for a while so that they get used to me coming out and giving them their food. Mine will load into the coop and peek out the door like "Did I do good...can I have my treat" and the I give them their treat dish. It is usually right before dark around 6 or 6:30 ish. They do come running during the day too when I go out so that they can see if I have the good stuff lol.

  6. Papas Chickens

    Papas Chickens Songster

    Jul 13, 2014
    Dateland Arizona
    I have 45 chickens and i have only let out 8 chickens every other day to free range there 11 weeks old and every time i try to get them back in there coop at evening time i have to catch them by hand because they dont follow me to the coop. They have been held and hand feed treats since they were 2 weeks old, they come up to me when i have treats but they dont follow me for a long way. Anyone have any tricks or ideas i can try to get them to go to there coop in the evening? [​IMG]

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