Moving mama

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Countrygirl1985, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Countrygirl1985

    Countrygirl1985 Chirping

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    Dec 7, 2018
    Hey y'all! I have 2 quick questions... So, my chicken coop was destroyed by Hurricane Michael, and my chickens and ducks are pretty much free range since the storm. Ive got a pin for my ducks and have tried everything to get my chickens to roost inside a small shed in the backyard. They still prefer to roost on whatis left of the frame of their old pin! Question 1... How can I get them to start going inside the shed? I've tried putting corn in there, a heat lamp, their feeders, and they just won't call it home.

    Question 2... I have a broody hen that picked a spot in our boat that is half-covered by the army tent it was under prior to the storm. She has lost a few eggs to predators, but is still sitting on several. Can i move her and the eggs from this spot to a place that is more secure?
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

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    I'm so sorry you had to go through that ugly hurricane. I doubt it's possible to go through that and not experience trauma. So if you are trying to recover from the trauma of a major, destructive storm, it's just as tough on your chickens. Their life and live quarters have been upended. It's going to be a challenge to get them used to something new and different.

    Chickens aren't exactly famous for their ability to roll with a punch. They take change very hard. So, what you'll need to do is get the small shed kitted out so it's as close to being what their coop was as you can. They need adequate roosting perches and convenient nest boxes. If the shed has no windows, it would be a good idea to make a couple for ventilation and cheerful light. If that's not possible, you will need to install a light so the chickens can see what they're doing.

    Then, lock them all up inside the new "coop" for a few days until they become comfortable in there. They need to imprint on the new coop in order to feel that it's "home". I would go ahead and move the broody and what's left of her eggs at the same time, taking care to find her a protected spot where the others won't bother her.

    This takes time. Your chickens are likely still traumatized, so patience is a good idea.
     
    aart and Countrygirl1985 like this.
  3. Clousic Chicks

    Clousic Chicks Songster

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    I agree...catch them, let them know you care for them in how you handle them, and then lock them inside their new "coop"...maybe for a couple of days. They'll adjust. Just make sure they have food and water in there. As for the broody hen. I would get her her own little space that is safe. I know a lady who has a special pen that includes a doghouse-like structure in it" for her broody hens. It's very secure from predators.

    So sorry you had to go through all of this...and sorry for your sweet birds.
     
    Countrygirl1985 and azygous like this.
  4. Countrygirl1985

    Countrygirl1985 Chirping

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    Dec 7, 2018
    Thank you so much. Yes, we were all traumatized from the storm. I live in Jackson County, and we had the eye come over our town. All my birds were in their coop with 160mph sustained winds! When the coop twisted and turned upside down, they were all smart enough to get under the house to ride out the rest of the storm. All of them survived, thank goodness! Its still hard for everyone here, so im sure they are having it just as rough. There used to be shade all over our yard, now there is literally not one tree left. Hurricane Michael literally changec the face of the Panhandle. It has been tough.
     
  5. Countrygirl1985

    Countrygirl1985 Chirping

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    Thank you. I've done my best to try to help them adjust so far, but now I will definately take the advice you all have given me. Hopefully it will help all of us rest a little easier.
     

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