My girls have stopped using their roost?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Violetray, Aug 15, 2016.

  1. Violetray

    Violetray New Egg

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    Sep 26, 2015
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    I have two free range hens and for the last year and half their routine has been sound. As soon as it goes dark they toddle into their coop and up into their roost...No problems..until recently..My white rock is losing masses of feathers from her undercarriage. I have done the research, cleaned the coop, dusted all over with mite powder. I have checked her all over and she has a clean bum (no discharge) so I don't think its gleet...and as one of the girls has stopped laying i am assuming she is molting. I can actually see new feathers coming through..But all of a sudden they have taken to roosting on my garden table which is higher than their roost but has always been there? I have to go out at night and pick them up and put them in their coop as i darent leave them out overnight because of foxes...Any ideas on why they would suddenly change their routine? Both seem very lively and healthy although I have established that the black rock (bramble) is the boss and my white rock (lily love) does stand back at food time etc...But both seem healthy...other than Lily seems to do this open beak deep breathing thing now and again?? Any help would be most appreciated :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2016
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Any possibility something got into the coop at night that frightened them?

    I know you cleaned the coop, but check the roost at night - run your finger along the roosts to see if there happens to be any northern fowl mites - you will usually get a red smear (blood) if they are present. These mites usually only come out at night and don't live on the chicken - they live in nooks and crannies so they are sometimes hard to get rid of. If you find those, that may be your problem.

    Those are my best guesses[​IMG] I hope someone else has a better idea.
     
  3. Violetray

    Violetray New Egg

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    Hiya thanks for your reply.[​IMG] I got up really early this morning and I took 4 hrs to completely disinfect, jetwash, scrub, dry and powder the whole coop and roost. The jetwash literally stripped the whole thing so there can no way be anything in there now..lol. But as I pulled the whole coop away from the garden fence I noticed the chicken wire had a whole in? Now it can't be rust as its only 10 months old. Can an animal chew through chicken wire?? I can't believe that, surely not? So I have fixed everything good as new. I moved the table so as to encourage them back in to the coop..Instead I found them on top of the roof of the coop [​IMG] So I am going to see how they do tomorrow as If it WAS mites then obviously they would still be reluctant to go in...Lets see how they go on in the next few days. I was so relieved today to see that my girls undercarriage feathers are all freshly popping through..so I'm pretty sure she is just molting [​IMG] Thanks again for your help
     
  4. Weehopper

    Weehopper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They can easily chew through chicken wire. I think chicken wire, to a varments, means, let's eat chicken wire. You need hardware cloth. A tad more expensive, but will save you from losses in the long run. Even rats can chew through chicken wire.
     
  5. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    X2


    Let us know how they are doing.
     
  6. Violetray

    Violetray New Egg

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    Sep 26, 2015
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    Happy to say, that after moving their coop to a different spot away from the fence and with its back against a wall...and the thorough deep clean and disinfection...plus powder, lots of love and care and patience placing them on the roost ramp...today they went in on their own again :) I think they have settled again. Normal life has resumed..lol. [​IMG]
     
  7. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    You did a good job![​IMG]

    Glad to hear good news!
     
  8. Violetray

    Violetray New Egg

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    Sep 26, 2015
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    Yeah, I'm just happy that they are happy [​IMG]
     

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