letting chickens out in the morning

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by MaryKate, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. MaryKate

    MaryKate New Egg

    Jan 23, 2011
    I have never kept chickens but am thinking of setting up an Eglu and getting a couple of chickens. What time will I need to let the chickens out of the their coop in the mornings. I am not a 7.00am riser!! Do they get fidgety if it starts getting light and they are not released into the run. I know they tend to return to their coop when the light reduces in the evening - it's early mornings that are my concern! Any advice would be welcome.

    Mary Kate
  2. BitsyB

    BitsyB Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2010
    Northern Delaware
    the old saying "Get up with the chickens" means you get up as the sun is rising- and chickens will certainly let you know when it's time for them to get out of the coop. Even if there's not a rooster! One way to solve this is have a very secure run that they can go out into until you can let them out to range around.

    Or, I've heard of automatic coop door openers, for the folks who can't be there when their little darlings are ready to start their day.

    Are you planning to keep them in the Eglu at night? Isn't that predator proof, so you could just let them hang out in it till you get up.
  3. JLS

    JLS Love my feathered babies!

    May 29, 2009
    My Coop
    [​IMG] The birds will become accustomed to your routine. If you cant let them out until 10am then so be it. Make sure you DO NOT over-crowd the coop. Those Eglu coops are not very big and beware they say you can fit a lot more birds than you should [​IMG] Pick birds that suit your climate and that can tolerate confinment. If you want "more" birds than get bantams. Let them out as soon as possible each day and keep them entertained/occupied. It should work pretty weel for you. [​IMG]
  4. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Good advice all the way around! Keep in mind that there probably won't be space for a feeder/waterer inside one of those eglus. So, especially in the summer, the birds won't have access to either until you let them out. So while they certainly don't NEED to be let out at the butt crack of dawn, they should be allowed access to food/water ASAP. And do make sure that there is enough space so that if they are confined for a while that there won't be behavioral issues (cramped, hungry, thirsty, and awake would make anyone pretty cranky). I ended up getting an auto door. But before then my pop door was always opened between 7 and 7:30, and DO keep food/water inside.
  5. JLS

    JLS Love my feathered babies!

    May 29, 2009
    My Coop
    Quote:Great advice!! I totally forgot that the food and water would probably be outside the Eglu. I have an automatic door and it is wonderful. I am not sure if/how to put one on an Eglu though [​IMG] Where there's a will there's usually a way [​IMG]
  6. 33yardbirds

    33yardbirds Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2010
    Southern New Jersey
    I usually let them out at first light. Sometimes they are still on the roost. Half hour late and they are waiting at the door and rather miffed.
  7. annaraven

    annaraven Born this way

    Apr 15, 2010
    SillyCon Valley
    Quote:I keep a robe and a pair of garden clogs near the door so I can get up, let them out, and go right back to bed...
  8. PhilErvin

    PhilErvin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 11, 2009
    Yucaipa, CA
    We have a 6' x 20' run that the girls come out into when they wake up in the morning. One of us go out whenever it is convenient for us and let them out to free range. Some folks keep them locked in a run all day so I figure any free time is better than none at all.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2011
  9. duckking

    duckking Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 2, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    Since it's still dark when I drive the kids to school, I let them out when I get home, which is about 9AM. They have food and water in there, but they are ready to come out as soon as I pull in the driveway. They go back into their coop themselves when it starts getting dark and my son goes out around 6PM to put their food and water in (I take it out in the morning) and lock them up. When it's light out at 7AM, they'll be let out before I take the kids to school and I don't lock them up until it's dark, which here in WA can be 10-10:30PM in the summer. They seem to adapt very easily. Mind you I only have 4 chickens in a large coop, so they have tons of room and food and water if something happens and I am delayed.

    And weekends.....yup robe and clogs let them out and back to bed..... [​IMG] When the kids are out of school, my son gets up and then goes back to bed.
  10. DianeS

    DianeS Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 28, 2010
    Mine don't care when I let them out. My three hens have a 16 sq foot coop, with food and water inside. They do have windows, so they know very well it's light outside. They make some noise, but not even enough for me to hear in the house unless I intentionally listen. I let them out when I get up, whenever that is. It's 7:30 on weekdays, but sometimes it's noon on the weekends!

    Oh, and I bought them at about 15 weeks of age, so it's not like they had all their lives this way, they had to adjust at that age, and they did so just fine.

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