my chicken wont use a coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jaclyncarneal, Sep 21, 2016.

  1. jaclyncarneal

    jaclyncarneal Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 21, 2016
    So i have a chicken (im told a silkie polish mix) and a duck (pekin). Together since 8 weeks. When they were younger we had them in a coop and etc all was well until animals got in the coop and we let them roam to make a new coop. Well after 48 hrs of roaming they REFUSE to go in anything. So i thought oh they want something big. Gave them my newly rewooded and vented shed. Nope that didnt cut it. To get them in its a game of chase and lock up they hate it. The duck especially. So they sleep on my patio (the duck in his kiddie pool, and the chicken on top this tall wooden storage area where we keep our grilling needs). So what do i do come winter? Do i force them into the shed and chase them every night? The whole time they are anywhere but roaming freely its nothing but noise and my neighbors complain of my guard duck. They say he belongs in a junk yard already because if you walk by he sounds the alarm. Should i bring them into my cement basement at night?
    I know some people feel negatively about leaving their chicks/ducks out overnight but theyve been doing it since july-ish, we have neighborhood cats who come to drink their water and the duck attacks them if he isnt preoccupied but they never do anything but beg for food drink and leave. They also keep the rats away so im thankful for that.
  2. highonrunning90

    highonrunning90 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 18, 2016
    Downeast Maine
    I'm sure other folks with much more experience will pop in and share a few words but here what i was thinking.

    When we first got our ladies they refused to go in the coop. So I forced them in, running around like a made man to catch them. It was a job with 7 of little bugger, yikes. I locked them in there animal proof coop for a solid week. I did this to recondition there minds to teach them that this was home. I gave them treats twice daily inside the coop and added additional, outside roosting bars. After a week we let them out about an hr before dusk for a week. They simply returned to the coop right before dusk. Then we extended it an additional hour the next week and so on until they were free ranging 4-8 hrs daily with no problems returning to the coop at night.

    Just my two cents and what worked for me. Let us know how it goes!
  3. josher57

    josher57 Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 26, 2016
    I agree. If something negative happened in the old coop, that needs to be trained out of them. Catch them and put them in the the new coop for a few days. They need to feel safe in there so they know its ok to be in the coop. I'm not a big fan of putting water and food in the coop but that may help entice them for the first few days.

    What are you going to do when they start laying eggs?

    Have you looked into building a run around the coop. If you already have a coop, a "hoop coop" would make a perfect run. They are easy to assemble and fairly cheap to make.
  4. jaclyncarneal

    jaclyncarneal Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 21, 2016
    I am definetely going to take this advice. Especially considering the fact that the duck is even trying to keep me out of my own yard. He only approves of my chicks presence.
    That being said my duck is a male and a mean little bugger at that, so i dont have to worry about him trying to lay eggs. The chick i have no clue what to do to be honest. My fiancee got me them on a whim with no research so as time goes im learning new things everyday (i just learned my chick has earlobes yesterday thanks to this site). Myfiancee is convinved that if we just hive our chick straw or bedding it will make a nest, lay eggs, and then he just grabs them from the nest. Im sure its more to it than that. Ive just been so preoccupied with trying to find a coop solution, and worrying about colder weather the whole laying eggs thing went right out of my attention.
  5. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    If you know your duck is male, you will need to keep him separated from the chicken. Male ducks will mate chickens if there are no female ducks for him. Chicken anatomy is not equipped to handle that sort of mating. He can kill the chicken with his 'manhood'.
    You fiancee is correct about egg laying. You don't need to provide nest boxes. Just pile some bedding in a corner of the coop and 'bait' it with some dummy eggs. She'll lay in that spot and you can gather once she's done.

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