my chicks can get in.. :((

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by bluefeather2697, Dec 13, 2011.

  1. bluefeather2697

    bluefeather2697 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i have a single nesting box up from the ground about 2 feet with a hen and her chickies. when they're hungry, they just jump out of the box but the hen is bothered to get the chicks up again the nesting box when they are finished eating, i tried to make a ladder but the chicks ignore it. any ideas? i can't put the nesting box down, since there are wild rats around here. any ideas? how about making the ladder wider, or what?
     
  2. justbugged

    justbugged Head of the Night Crew for WA State

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    Does the ramp have traction? They also will have to be taught to use the ramp.
     
  3. bluefeather2697

    bluefeather2697 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:yes it has. but how can i teach them? [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  4. bobbieschicks

    bobbieschicks Chicken Tender

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    Quote:yes it has. but how can i teach them? [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I teach my chicks by putting them at the bottom of the ladder and walking them up (gentle nudges as they walk along - keeping them on the ramp with my hands if necessary). And then I reverse the process by walking them down it, though they usually fly down from the top if possible. It takes a couple of times for them to feel confident, but as long as there is something for them to grip they will be fine walking up and down the ladder. Also make sure the angle of the ladder isn't too steep. Is your ladder a real ladder look (open with rungs) or a board with strips of wood for traction? I'd recommend the board with strips if you don't have it that way. You can also build a temporary ramp that has a landing then more steps if your angle is too steep. Think of staircases that people use - too steep and you feel uncomfortable walking them, if there are multiple landings it helps break up the steepness.

    It also depends on the age of the chick whether they could manuever the steps. My chicks don't walk up this ramp until they are 4 weeks or older.
    [​IMG]

    Hope this helps. [​IMG]
     
  5. bluefeather2697

    bluefeather2697 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:yes it has. but how can i teach them? [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I teach my chicks by putting them at the bottom of the ladder and walking them up (gentle nudges as they walk along - keeping them on the ramp with my hands if necessary). And then I reverse the process by walking them down it, though they usually fly down from the top if possible. It takes a couple of times for them to feel confident, but as long as there is something for them to grip they will be fine walking up and down the ladder. Also make sure the angle of the ladder isn't too steep. Is your ladder a real ladder look (open with rungs) or a board with strips of wood for traction? I'd recommend the board with strips if you don't have it that way. You can also build a temporary ramp that has a landing then more steps if your angle is too steep. Think of staircases that people use - too steep and you feel uncomfortable walking them, if there are multiple landings it helps break up the steepness.

    It also depends on the age of the chick whether they could manuever the steps. My chicks don't walk up this ramp until they are 4 weeks or older.
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/97463_dcp_4506.jpg

    Hope this helps. [​IMG]

    thank you very much, i really appreciate it. but, my chicks are just 4 days old. so i'll just hope that they will follow their mother as she goes up. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] but i will also try what u said. thanks again! [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  6. Chic-n-farmer

    Chic-n-farmer Showers of Blessings

    Sprinkle a little feed on the ramp and they will be all over it. This method never fails... look what happened to Hansel and Gretel! [​IMG]
     
  7. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    At their age, I doubt they'll use a ladder. I'd put the hen and chicks in a dog crate that I'd shut at night time (to keep rats out).
     
  8. CupOJoe42

    CupOJoe42 CT Chicken Whisperer

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    Rats can climb really well. You need to secure your coop with hardware cloth or put the hen and her chicks in a secure area. You might want to set rat bait traps around the outside of your coop and run area.
     
  9. stone_family3

    stone_family3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I dried chopped up fruit and put it on the ramp to the outside, took them forever to get outside then they didn't want to come in LOL.
     
  10. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:X2 Try Pavlova Theory

    Bribes always work. Go into the coop with all the kids locked in with you and put little treats going up and going down once the are in. There has to be a lead chick in the pecking order find her or the roo and use them first bc they follow that baby first then put a treat in front of that baby and another closer and closer to the ramp and they will all want its treat and keep doing it and now they are not thinking about the ramp but the treat all of them and another over and over until they are in the sleeper. Then when they are all in the sleeper put a couple of treats at the top not to far down bc your training them to walk down not jump down and then another close to the next one until the are all down in the coop once again. Now do it over and over and you got it and so did the kids. From that point forward they know that the ramp is a treat heaven and put now one in the middle and they will run up the ramp to the middle and eventually the top and they just run up the ramp for the treat they have got it but Pavlova Theory really works. You need but patients.
     

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