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Keeping the chickens in the coop for a few days?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by TheMainException, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    I don't have a very large coop. It is about 12 sq ft. I have 9 small bantams (under six months, some only 3-4 months old). All of them are hens and relatively docile at that. I have not yet designed an automatic door, being extremely low on funds. I'd like to visit my parents for a few days and worry that without being able to close the door, something will eat them all in the few nights I'm away. Would it be possible to keep them in the coop for those few days and nights? It has good ventilation and lots of space to roost, nice nesting boxes. I don't want to get back and see that they have pecked each other to death, but I have no one to open and close it for them.
     
  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Does the coop have a window (I just hate the thought of an animal being kept in the dark for several days)??? IMO, the risk of injury would probably be greater in leaving the coop door open (I'm taking it your run is not covered?) than them being cooped up in tight quarters for 2 or 3 days (I wouldn't attempt more than that). Maybe you could find a teen or older kid around anywhere who would open/close the door each day for a few bucks???
     
  3. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    The coop has 2 windows and a top vent. I just moved into this area and don't know anyone, plus the homes are kinda far apart, so that makes things hard on finding someone to do that for me. Maybe in a few weeks I'll be able to find someone. My run is definitely not predator proof. I would only be going for 2 or 3 days, not any more than that.
     
  4. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    If possible, hang their waterer so there will be no chance of it being turned over...
     
  5. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    Ooh darn. Good point. Well, I will only be gone for 36 hours and 12 of those are sleeping hours, so I'm sure they will be fine for that short amount of time. Whenever I go out to check on them during the day, they all come running out of their coop, which means they are spending a good amount of time in there anyway.
     
  6. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    I'm going away for a week and have 45 birds that will be locked down for the duration. I do have someone coming in to gather eggs and check on them to be sure the automatic waterer is working and they have enough feed. They won't be happy but they'll survive. Have done it before with no problems.
     
  7. carrlr

    carrlr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 31, 2010
    Southern Illinois
    Since they have ventilation, and as long as they have food and water, they'll be fine. Like woodmort said, they won't be happy, but they will survive.
     
  8. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    Okay, well, they made it. They looked okay, except for one thing...they rushed out of that house and to the water bowl like no body's business. I looked in the coop and sure enough, the bowl had been flipped and probably emptied that first day. I felt so bad. I had to leave them in the coop again for the same amount of time and this time I gave them the original bowl full of water and a second bowl full of water which was larger than the first. I hope that works. I know what is the most important thing and there they were without any. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  9. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    When you leave them in the future, get them a proper vacuum-type waterer and fill it to the top -- they can't flip those. At worse, they can fill up the bottom with bedding, but even on the rare occasion when mine have done that, they at least have kind of a sawdust mush to eat [​IMG] If you don't want to do that, get a two-gallon "hog bucket" type rubber bowl and fill that sucker up all the way so that it's too heavy to overturn. Don't waste money on a smaller rubber bowel; mine turn the three quart one over (it was bought for for table-scraps but doubled as a water bowel for the pullets during introduction time).
     
  10. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    Alright, thanks! I'll try that instead. Eventually, I'm hoping to get poultry nipples and hang their water from hooks on the ceiling. That way, I never have to worry about them turning it over or filling it up with crap and bedding. I just can't find a place near me that sells them.
     

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