letting chickens free to roam?

chickensupreme

Hatching
10 Years
May 16, 2009
3
0
7
hello, how long does it take for chickens to get acclimated to their new coop. When can i let them out to free range , will they return to the coop to roost at night.
 

Intheswamp

Crowing
10 Years
Mar 25, 2009
2,373
111
256
South Alabama
From what I understand they need to stay in the coop a week or so. Someone more experienced will chime in here hopefully, but a week and I think they'll be "homed in" to the coop. And, yes, they should then return to the coop at night.

Best wishes,
Ed
 

frogs n chickens

Chirping
10 Years
May 19, 2009
233
0
99
valley springs, calif.
from what i have read on this forum, only a couple of days, but I kept my ladies in the coop for a week just to make sure; I did not want to be chasing them around with a fishing net in the dark.
I have read on this forum of people moving their coop 50 ft away or so and the chickens would go to ths spot the coop used to be and sit on the ground; pretty strong homing instinct.
 

Eggie and Me

Songster
10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
240
1
119
Southern California
how old are your chicks? how long have they been in their coop? Ours were just a few days short of 6 wks. We left their heat light on in the coop until they were 6 wks and fully feathered. It took just 2 nights of us putting them in the coop before they started going in on their own. Right at 8 p.m. As for free ranging. Ours spend most of their day in "their" fenced yard. However we have been allowing them more and more time out. Returning to their yard/coop area has been a breeze for us. I just call them and they come running. Of course, they know that I have some special dinner type snack. Oh they can be cought so easily.
Best of luck to you.
 

Judy

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
535
448
South Georgia
A few days should be enough.

It will help if you will teach them to come to your call. Decide on a sound or phrase, use it and offer a treat. Does not take them long to learn the sound means goodies. Then you can use this to call them to the coop.

A light in the coop for a while can help, too. A battery operated closet light or flashlight will do. Once they dependably go in a at dusk, you won't need a light any longer.
 

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