My chicks won't go outside

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MaineChickens123, May 17, 2017.

  1. MaineChickens123

    MaineChickens123 Just Hatched

    May 17, 2017
    Very new here...I have 8 six-week old chicks (pretty sure 7 females and a roo). They have been in their coop (an 8x10 wing of our barn) for about 3 weeks, with supplemental heat dropping each week (now on no heat). It's finally nice enough (and their 8x16 fully enclosed pen is finished)....but they won't go out! I started with opening the door and trying to lure out with treats, but they wouldn't go. This morning I moved all 8 out, one by one, and within 5 minutes they were all back inside. I have moved their feeder out hoping to coax them out, but don't want to stress them too much or withhold feed. Do I move them out but block access back into the coop? Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks!
    biophiliac likes this.
  2. vergeL

    vergeL Just Hatched

    Apr 15, 2017
    Oxford Maine
    I have had chickens that age in the past who were shy about going out. I just let them have access to outside and some took up to 2 weeks to feel comfortable enough, others only 4 days, and yet others about a week. I would think if you just keep them feeling safe and give them the access they will eventually go out.
  3. AuntJamie

    AuntJamie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 4, 2017
    Sort of Central Ohio
    I agree. It's a BIG, new world for them! They know it's safe in the coop. Give them time.
    For the first few days I started letting mine out they just stuck their heads out the door to look around then worked up to stepping outside. Each time they go out they get further from the coop now. Don't worry. They'll get to it. And then they'll be frolicking.:wee
    MaineChickens123 likes this.
  4. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 20, 2011
    middle TN
    Yep, chickens fear the unknown. Time and curiosity will cure it.
    AuntJamie likes this.
  5. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Out Of The Brooder

    May 17, 2017
    What I did with mine was to release them from the brooder into their pen. I had the larger feeder and waterers already set out near where I released them. Watched them for about 20 minutes and then drove back up to the house. At dusk I came back and put them in the coop with a bit of food and water for the first few nights. After about 4 days they were waiting on me to open the coop door in the morning and it's been that way ever since. I've found that if I wait til almost dark all I have to do is to walk in and shut the door. They've already gotten in the coop and are on the roosts.
  6. MaineChickens123

    MaineChickens123 Just Hatched

    May 17, 2017
    Thank you everyone! You are right that patience will be the key - I have left the door open all day today and just noticed they are outside - sticking very close to the ramp into the coop, but still scratching around and getting a little more brave :)
    vergeL and AuntJamie like this.
  7. SueT

    SueT Overrun With Chickens

    May 27, 2015
    SW MO
    There are many posting about the opposite problem, chicks that won't or don't know how to go in. Not to worry. Don't lock them outside. Your coop is a good size, and they will go out in their time.
  8. Crazy For Color

    Crazy For Color Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2016
    The problem I'm having is my adult chickens won't let the little ones outside! They chase them back into the coop :(
  9. ChickenMammX4

    ChickenMammX4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2015
    SW Ohio
    I remember when we finally finished the run, opened the popdoor thinking the chicks would run out and be so happy to be outdoors...they just stood in the coop :rolleyes: It took a day or 2 before they finally ventured out.
    MaineChickens123 likes this.

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