My 2-cents on roosts

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by redoak, Jun 18, 2009.

  1. redoak

    redoak Songster

    Feb 27, 2008
    Russia, NY
    Chickens will always try to get on the highest roost. So best to have all your roosts at the same height.

    If one chicken doesn't like the chicken next to them on the roost even if the other chicken is several feet away, the more dominant chicken will go peck at the other chicken. So it's best to have several short roosts instead of one long roost.

    If your forced to have one long roost (long narrow coop) try putting up some plywood dividers to try and break up the roosts.

    My chickens have the balance of a drunk guy at a DWI stop. So it's best to use a wide board like a 2x4 with the wide side up.

    These are just my observations. My chickens are very sweet and tolerant to each other during the day, but at night if they are next to a bird they like they will peck at the chicken they don't like until that chicken moves or burrows under another chicken.
  2. skeeter9

    skeeter9 Songster

    That's not bad advice at all. I've observed much the same thing in my coops. That's why I have several roosts in each one - otherwise there would surely be some girls "roosting" on the floor! LOL
  3. SC_Hugh

    SC_Hugh Songster

    May 23, 2009
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Great suggestion, I plan to build 2"x4" roost bars when the chicks get a little bigger, right now they are roosting on 2"x2"s. Also, attaching roosts to the walls will free up more floor space in my coop.

    Wall mounted roost pics?

    My roof height is 6 feet inside the coop. How high can I put the roosts that is safe for full grown chickens? Maybe equal height roosts on opposite walls so that the chickens can have stare downs from across the coop?

    I only have 4 birds and they hang out in pairs,


    my current roost setup:
  4. Blue_Myst

    Blue_Myst Songster

    Feb 5, 2009
    This is great advice! I have similar set-up, so if a chicken gets irritated of its neighbor, it can just jump to another roost. I've found that it reduces the nightly squabbles immensely.
  5. ~*Sweet Cheeks*~

    ~*Sweet Cheeks*~ Songster

    Mar 12, 2009
    Medford, Oregon
    I have ended up with one long roost board - leftover plywood that's 6" x 5' mounted on three shelf brackets to get it 3-4" from the wall.

    I had a few shorter ones - 2' x 6"s but all ten chicks would cram onto one roost.

    It does take them a good 10-15 minutes to get next to the chick they like for the night, climbing over and under each other. Very little pecking just squacking. And the order they're lined up changes nightly. Once settled, they happily chirp and sleep the whole night.
  6. Fruit Juice

    Fruit Juice Songster

    Mar 13, 2009
    Boulder, CO
    Isn't It bad for their feet though? 4 in wide?
  7. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    my chickens prefer the roost that is smaller...a rounded 2 X 2 is what they go for.. I have 2X4s with wide side up and they won't use them!

    Head hen always gets on the highest roost on the far right side.
  8. chookchick

    chookchick Songster

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    Well I thought that was just my obnoxious little chicken that did that! I am going to redesign the roost situation in my new coop. BTW I saw that same hen STEP on the other hen's head today, when she tried to go in for a treat. Aren't they sweet!

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