NONE of my 8 week old hens use the roost!

ikemiker

Chirping
Jul 5, 2016
34
6
54
Second question of the day....

NONE of my 8 week old hens use the roost at night. They make a massive pile in the corner.

During the day, they flap up to both a low roost we have just for fun, and a "loft" that we built for fun also. I know they can fly up to the roost, because each morning, they have flown over the partition that I had installed in the coop to keep them back from the door (lol- I was so naive!)

Is this something they will eventually pick up? Do they need to be trained? How?

?Jen?
 

waddles99

Songster
7 Years
Jun 22, 2013
1,477
115
206
NJ
It helps if they see another bird roosting. Since you don't have older ones to show them the way, they need to learn for themselves. My birds naturally roost on everything they can, (feeders, waterers, fences) so if I were you I would just pick them up and put them on the roost.
 

ikemiker

Chirping
Jul 5, 2016
34
6
54
I did build them a little "training roost" about 8 inches off the coop floor, and they do hop onto it during the day, but if I try to take them out of the pile in the evening they freak out and have to start their pile all over again.

Such little weirdos. I suppose they'll figure it out eventually.

:)
 

waddles99

Songster
7 Years
Jun 22, 2013
1,477
115
206
NJ
Honestly, and I know that many people are bothered by it, there is no problem with them sleeping on the ground. As long as they are in a secure coop there really isn't a problem. Some people have problems with rodents so it is best in that case if they roost. But they'll figure it out eventually. It is the natural instinct of a chicken to roost as high as possible.
 

ace08

In the Brooder
Jun 21, 2016
11
0
12
Oregon
My girls slept in a pile in the corner until about 13 weeks. One night two of them moved to the roost and three more followed a couple of nights later. The remaining girls moved up about a week later when we rehomed our surprise rooster.
 

RanchRichey

Songster
Apr 16, 2016
260
120
151
Mine didn't roost till 12-14 weeks, several week after I moved them into their big girl coop.
I would go out most nights and put them on the roost before I went to bed. Eventually 1, then 2, 3, 4 started roosting all on their own. I still had 3 - 4 stragglers, but after I changed out the roost bar to a wider flat one, and blocked off their nesting boxes, all 8 were roosting pros.
Now at 18 weeks, I have reopened the nest boxes with nesting material and fake eggs hoping they will lay soon, and not one has tried to sleep anywhere but the roost.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
97,977
134,826
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
Mine didn't roost till 12-14 weeks, several week after I moved them into their big girl coop.
I would go out most nights and put them on the roost before I went to bed. Eventually 1, then 2, 3, 4 started roosting all on their own. I still had 3 - 4 stragglers, but after I changed out the roost bar to a wider flat one, and blocked off their nesting boxes, all 8 were roosting pros.
Now at 18 weeks, I have reopened the nest boxes with nesting material and fake eggs hoping they will lay soon, and not one has tried to sleep anywhere but the roost.
This^^^
 

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