Moving to a new coop

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ukrkoz, Nov 26, 2014.

  1. ukrkoz

    ukrkoz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It is likely a silly question, but how do you "naturally" invite chickens into a larger coop?
    I just finished and converted a 10x10 shad into a coop. Royal abode comparing to the old one (though it's very warm and cozy there, considering how much smaller it is) - and they royally ignore the new one too.
    I have, so far, in a week of it's availability, only one hen that decided to reside in it. Today. Rest will walk in, scope it, try perches and nesting boxes - and go back to the ol n small.
    Any "bate" I can set to move them ALL in? Outside of hand tossing them in for the night and locking inside, and leaving the old one locked for the next few days?
     
  2. CityBredCountry

    CityBredCountry Out Of The Brooder

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    Hey there, I just did the same thing myself! And what I did worked out perfectly. In the smaller one, I actually moved this box outside the cage to give more square footage of running room.... anyways. All I did was catch them all and put them in the new one for 2 days. I locked up the old one so they could not get into it. The 2 day thing worked out super well!

    This is what I had:
    [​IMG]

    and this is what I moved them to:
    [​IMG]

    You can see their old "mini-coop" to the right here. This new shed needs some additional ventilation which will be done in the next day or two.

    To catch them, I let them all go into their old one, locked them in, and had my daughter run in and grab them. I walked them over a few at a time. They really wanted to get out the first day, but the second day they were a little more chill and ok. But I waited at least 48 hours.

    Make sure that there is plenty of food, water, and ventilation. Hope this helps
     
  3. CityBredCountry

    CityBredCountry Out Of The Brooder

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    oh, and as you can see... I free range/open range my birds, so I was a little concerned of them running away. ;-) But they were awesome!
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    They 'naturally' will stay with what is familiar(the old coop) until you do something to change their habit.

    It might not seem 'natural' but the best way to habituate them to the new coop is to lock them in it for a couple/few days, then it will become their new home. You'll probably have to keep the entrance to the old coop closed off for awhile if you don't want them in there.
     
  5. ukrkoz

    ukrkoz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Poor chickens, what a distress awaits them.[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    OK, will do. Just about the right time to do so, with few days off.
     
  6. ukrkoz

    ukrkoz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our only concern is we have a decent sized run, fully covered, attached to the old coop. They have a siesta happy time there after lunch, as I'm in Seattle area and it RAINS. Shed does not have such run and we do not want to deprive them of that pleasure. They clearly sing a happy song, fed and dry.
    But then again, the way my old coop is designed, they enter coop from a small run door. I can simply block that. Otherwise, we let them roam anywhere they want to, it's acre full 6 ft fence property.
    Yeah, catching and moving 25 chickens in the dark will be adventure.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Oh, they'll be fine....just provide lots of food and water in the new coop...maybe some treats spread out in the bedding to scratch for.

    Take them off the roost at night when they are sleepy and docile?

    You could leave access to the old run/shelter open to them.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2014
  8. ukrkoz

    ukrkoz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, Missus agreed to do this tonight. She's the one who babies them does not want to cause any distress.
    Though the old one is not that small, they are seriously crammed in there. 10x10x9 is a much better deal. We'll toss all older ones in tonight and leave mama with 7 youngest ones in the old coop. I'll leave a 60W bulb on for them to settle on new perches and then turn it off later. Fortunately, the way it is now, they go to bed at 5.
     
  9. ukrkoz

    ukrkoz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They are pretty much in.
    It was sort of natural and fun.
    1st night we tossed all the old and older ones in. I left light on, and we had plenty of fun watching them settle on perches. Took them about hlaf an hour of exploration and falls, as new purches are much longer/taller, one is all the way up in the rafters. But they got it figured.
    Yesterday, some of them went in by themselves. We waited until the youngest flock - 7 youngest ones and mama - went into the old coop and shut the door to that run. The erst of the flock I simply shepherded into the new coop. Either walking behind them, or using a long thin twig as a shepherd staff. Took me only about 10 minutes in the rain, ha-ha. I had dimmer added to the light, had it cozy for them, and they cuddled in just fine.
    Figure today, they will mostly go in themselves. We'd love to have young family stay in the old run, it's about right size, and the older flock to go into the new coop.
    I have worse issue to fight. Water keeps getting inside the shed door and dripping down onto the floor. I added a door gutter yesterday, but it was cold and pouring yesterday, so sealing that gutter was not possible.Will be on this today to finish.
     
  10. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Flock Master

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    Congrats on your move. I've also recently moved my flock into a new coop which is "not quite" finished, though secure enough for them to live in. I still need to add a skirt, put hdw cloth on inside of window frames, locks on outside of windows, add interior electrical, do a bit of painting, cut in a pop door and outside access to nest boxes. Considering how long it took me to get this far with the new coop, I really don't care if it's not completed until spring. The worst of it all is that the coop is built on newly cleared land: a mud oasis, and won't have a proper run until I can get it seeded in the spring. My girls kept going back to the old coop when I let them out after a few days. They'd run circles around it, and stare longingly at the closed doors!
     

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