Not using roost poles

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by AK Chickens, Oct 9, 2014.

  1. AK Chickens

    AK Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 26, 2014
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    Anyone have suggestions for keeping chickens from spending the night in nesting boxes. I have roost poles for them and there easily accessible but they choose not to use use them. I have physically put them on the roost poles, any suggestions would be appreciated
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    A wide roost is helpful because it lets them use their body heat to keep their feet warm, I would say at least the wide side of a 2x4. where you live, mabe wider. If your nests are higher than your roosts, that will encourage them to use the nests as they like to nest high. You may have to cover the nest boxes at night and uncover them in the morning for a while. Be sure there is no draft on the roost area.
     
  3. familyfarm1

    familyfarm1 Overrun With Chickens

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    x2
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Young birds do like a flatter surface to roost on, my older birds prefer a round roost. I have both available.

    But the clicker of the deal is make your nests lower than your roosts.

    x 3
     
  5. AK Chickens

    AK Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 26, 2014
    Palmer,Alaska
    I have the roost higher than the nest boxes with 2x4 layed sideways. I notice them using the roost but they like to dogpile in 1 box at night, but they do lay eggs in the same spot everyday on the floor. Will they eventually figure out that the boxes are for laying eggs?
     
  6. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    How old are these birds? It often takes a while for youngsters to decide they would rather roost then sleep in a huddle. For that reason I do not install nest boxes until chickens are nearing point of lay. But even then youngsters will often choose to sleep in a pile on the floor because that's what they are used to. They grow out of it eventually. Just block off the opening to your nest boxes and they'll start roosting when they are ready.
     
  7. AK Chickens

    AK Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 26, 2014
    Palmer,Alaska
    I have 5 birds, they are about 6 months old with 3 that lay everyday.
     
  8. Massey

    Massey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm having similar issues,

    10 chickens, nest boxes lower then the roost, roost is a 4x2 on its side with steps up to it, about 5 chickens use the roost and the other 5 use one corner of a nest box. The way only thing I can think of is it might be a bit drafty so I'll rule out over the next coupleoof days and get back to ye.
     
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Take them out of the nests and put them on the roost after full dark.

    My experience was that I had some pullets that the older birds wouldn't let roost with them so the pullets wanted to roost in the nests.
    I put up another roost just a couple inches lower than the main roost and began removing the pullets from the nests after dark and putting them on their roost.
    Did that for a couple nights, then started going in at dusk and poking them in butt if they got into the nests(I have 'outside the coop' access to my nests boxes so this was easy). Pretty soon all I had to do was walk in and they would leave the nest and go to the roost so they didn't get poked in the butt. Took about 3 weeks total before they got in the habit of roosting on the roosts instead of in then nests.
     
  10. Massey

    Massey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I may have to give that try but then I also have the question is it a big deal if they don't roost???
     

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