I love my chickens, but.... Why?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by potato chip, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    I hope this doesn't get me kicked off the forum.... [​IMG]

    Why do they have to come up next to me wherever I go in my enormous backyard and kick dirt all over me and into my shoes?

    Why, in said enormous backyard, where they are free to roam and eat bugs and dig holes and do whatever they like, do they stand on the back doorstep looking in?

    Why, in enormous backyard, do they need to come onto the patio to poo and not on some bit of garden/dirt/vegetation?

    Why do they keep pulling new stuff out of the vege box I'm trying to get inside, instead of eating the bits they've already grabbed?

    Why can't they heel like a dog, instead of trying to trip me over when I'm trying to take some goodies to their house?

    Why, when I've bought them a new bigger house which has a perch area to sleep on, do they sleep in the laying boxes and right next to them, using about a quarter of their house? (should I remove the perch if they aren't going to use it?)
     
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  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    [​IMG] That's too cute! Who knows why they do these things, they just do.

    Quote:
    Now for the last why...

    Are the roosting bars higher than the nesting boxes? If not, move them higher.
    Block off the nesting boxes at night and open them back up in the am, you don't want poopy eggs[​IMG]
    Once their cozy box isn't available they will generally roost.
     
  3. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    The nesting boxes are floor level, and the roost is up about a foot/18 inches (something like that)
    Quote:
    But they do their eggs first thing, won't they just start laying in the house?
     
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Do you let them out at dawn or do you keep them locked in until later in the day.
    Chickens generally lay every 26 to 30 hours, so if they are like mine, they may start out first thing in the morning, but everyday they lay at least 2hrs. later than the day before.
    If you don't want them sleeping and pooping in the nesting boxes, the only way to train them not to sleep there is to block off the boxes and you will have to unblock them first thing in the morning until they have the habit of roosting where you want them to.

    What type of chickens do you have?
     
  5. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    They are let out in the morning, it's not dawn (dawn is something crazy in summer, like 4am or something). They can come out of their house at dawn though, they aren't locked up in there, but they are still confined to the meshed run attached to their house. I let them out of the run to roam about, when I get up.

    They are isa browns.

    If I block off the boxes so they cant sleep in there, will they lay eggs in the house? (that'd be annoying, because I'd have to go into the run to open up the house, whereas the laying boxes have a door to the outside.)
     
  6. Urban Flock

    Urban Flock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Funny Post.

    Now for the last WHY?
    This is what we have to do when we get new chicks. Our roosts are higher than the nesting boxes so that is not the problems. Some chicks just like to sleep in the nesting boxes. I go out each night after they have gone to bed and check the boxes. If one is in a box I just remove them and place them on the roost. Sometimes they jump down and go back into the box and I remove them again. I have had to do this as many as three times in a row. After a few nights they don't try to go to the nesting box but just head up to the roost when it is time. Once they get the hang of it they don't go in the boxes.
     
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  7. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    sigh, I guess I can try that. I put them up on the roost the first couple of nights, when they weren't used to their house and didn't know to go inside. They seem to have revised their initial instructions to sleep up there (there was poo underneath initially) to sleeping in the next boxes and right nextdoor (4 chooks, 3 nest boxes, one has to sleep outside of a box.)
     
  8. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I can answer the "why" of most of your rhetorical questions. They do all those things because they want to be near you on the off chance that you might make tasty treats materialize. You are a reliable food dispenser.

    The poop on the patio is because there's something about clean walkways and decks and porches that chickens find irresistible to poop on. The same goes for narrow doorways and steps.They simply have to plant their poops where you're sure to step in them. It's in their job description. Sort of like a dog wanting to be on the couch or your bed, or the cat wanting to nap on your favorite black sweater.

    Everyone insists that chickens want to sleep in nest boxes that are higher than their perches. But my perches are higher than the nest boxes, and they will try to sleep in them if I don't throw a gate across them before bedtime. If I forget, there are one or two hens that will immediately notice and take advantage of my memory lapse. Sleeping in nest boxes is just another one of the things chickens are compelled to do.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2016
  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Good idea.

    I am just wondering if you were not joking when you were asking all the "WHY'S"?
    You sound a bit discouraged, frustrated and overwhelmed with your flock?!?
     
  10. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    hahaha good one (reminds me of that scene in the movie "Uncle Buck")
     

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