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Juvies won't leave Henhouse

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Bluekatana, Feb 26, 2013.

  1. Bluekatana

    Bluekatana New Egg

    Feb 26, 2013
    Rome, Georgia
    I've read through the search results, where a broody hen may not leave the hen house, but this one is a little different.

    I've got 6 older laying hens, and a rooster that come and go from the house to the run, but the 15 younger hens (all around 4 months old) won't leave the hen house, and when I PUT them out, even with scratch grains they FREAK OUT and panic trying to get back in...even ramming the hutch door. What gives???

    Do I stop feeding them in the feeders inside and only throw out grains...will they venture outside if they get hungry enough?

    Also, I've installed a watering system with the "chicken nipples" but am hesitant to remove the water buckets they are used to, for fear they won't know to go to the nipples... Do I do the same thing...remove buckets and they'll figure out where the water is?


  2. Gargoyle

    Gargoyle Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 13, 2011
    Fox Valley, IL
    My Coop
    I think you need to start keeping food and water right outside the door. Also keep an eye out, see if anything is scaring them outside, or if the big ones are picking on them.
  3. tadpole98

    tadpole98 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 20, 2012
    they might have seen a predator, and are freaked out now. try giving them kelp, it calms them down. or, the bigger hens are scaring them. in the morning put the feed outside, and at night put it back in. they will come out in their own time.

    dont worry about the nipple waterers, just take the bucket water away and they WILL use the nipples.
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    It usually takes mine several weeks to venture outside except to drink. My water is outside, so they gotta go out sometimes.Food is inside, so they spend most of the day inside.
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    I wonder if the new chickens were raised indoors and never had freedom to go outside.
  6. stone_family3

    stone_family3 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2011
    I had this problem last year, I stopped feeding inside and then started throwing table scraps in the run. I even locked them outside on several nice days (with water of course). It took a couple of weeks but now I can't keep them inside.
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Mine weren't, they were in a grow out pen outdoors.

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