My big ol' chickens won't go in the coop!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by thecatspyjamas, Nov 26, 2016.

  1. thecatspyjamas

    thecatspyjamas New Egg

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    Jun 9, 2009
    I'm pretty new to raising chickens. I've had two since this summer. I've looked over a lot of posts and gotten a lot of good info. So, I have 2 huge chickens. They are "rescues" and I didn't realize how big they'd get if I left food out all the time. OOPS! I recently starting leaving their feeders open about an hour in the morning and giving them a small snack in the afternoon hoping they might slim down or at least not get any bigger. I believe they are cornish X or something like that. They are really big and they have never used the roost in the run and have never been in the coop besides when I put them in there. They did sort of fly out, but I worried they would break their legs since they are so big. We made another ramp to the coop that is longer and they still won't use it. I haven't tried a light in there yet, but that will be something I'll try soon. I have tried food in the coop and tried putting food on the steps and they ramp, but they just eat what they can reach and that's it.

    It has been getting cold at night and I'd like for them to go in the coop and use it, but is it too late? Will they ever use it, or should I try to make some kind of nest box for them to use inside the run? We made them a nice coop with two levels of roosts and a nest box, etc. that they have never used and roosts outside too, but they seem to be stuck to the ground. They stay inside the run right now because our yard isn't completely fenced in yet.
     
  2. 18acres

    18acres Just Hatched

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    All I can say is good luck! A stubborn hen will die that way.

    Personally when I get new hens I lock them up in the coop (closed) for a few days until they understand that is home. When I do let them out some DO try to avoid the coop, but the majority follow the others back in at night.
     
  3. thecatspyjamas

    thecatspyjamas New Egg

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    Jun 9, 2009
    I wish I had done that...I got them in the hottest part of summer. I live in Alabama so it gets pretty hot and muggy so I was kind of afraid to lock them inside there, I guess. I'm wondering if a nest box inside the run would keep them warm enough. I can pick up one sand get her in the coop, but the other one is bigger and she's heard to handle! I never thought I'd worry about them this much. [​IMG]
     
  4. thecatspyjamas

    thecatspyjamas New Egg

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    Jun 9, 2009
    Of course the bigger one is the leader....
     
  5. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Post a pick and we can identify breed. You do have to train them to see the coop as home though. That means shutting them up for a day or two. And if the coop is too hot for them to be in during the summer, it needs more ventilation.
     
  6. thecatspyjamas

    thecatspyjamas New Egg

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    Jun 9, 2009
    I will try to post a pic later. I believe I have enough ventilation, I was probably just being over cautious. I planned to keep the door from the coop to the run open until cold weather for extra ventilation. But I guess that didn't work out so well since they stay in the run all the time. I got them to take a few steps up the ramp today, but I do worry about them getting out. Please don't criticize me when you see how big they are. I made some feeders to offer feed all the time and I learned from my mistake! [​IMG]
     
  7. Grace11

    Grace11 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This may sound harsh, but IF your birds are Cornish X as you say, they are bred to become huge very quickly and then be eaten. These birds will eat so much that they can have a heart attack or break their legs from the sheer weight. They dont go in the coop because they cant! These are not birds that will act normal for you, you would have to rehome or eat them. I wouldnt rehome them unless the person knew what they are and are for. You need a breed that isnt a designer chicken for your dinner table!
     

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