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New hens won't leave their isolation cage!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Lil Mucket, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. Lil Mucket

    Lil Mucket In the Brooder

    Jun 23, 2010
    I used to have 5 hens, then I lost 2 to a predator so I just got 3 new hens to replace them. They are about 18 weeks old. I have them in a big ol dog crate out in the wood shed and they have been in there separated from my other hens, who free-range.

    The new hens came from a guy who was starting a commercial type egg operation but switched to meat production instead and had to get rid of the layers. They were all in one of those old style meat chicken houses and they are seriously afraid of people. The guy was super nice but just due to the nature of what he was doing, there just wasn't much interaction. They also had no access to the outdoors. I got them last Saturday and today I decided I'd let them out. I kept my other hens locked up in their coop today but it's almost 3pm and the new hens are still sitting in the cage with the door wide open. They get so afraid when I go in there, even though I always just go in, speak softly and give them treats. The wood shed is open on one side so it isn't like it's not possible for them to go out.

    Is this normal? I didn't feed them this morning, though I did scatter some pellets by the doorway and then right outside the cage to tempt them out but they aren't buying it.

  2. Ruth Ann

    Ruth Ann Songster

    Apr 13, 2010
    South Carolina
    I have never dealt with this, but I imagine in time they will go outside.
    Just new to them and they are scared.

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