Now ALL except one chicken are sleeping outside the coup!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Oz Chook, Jun 10, 2008.

  1. Oz Chook

    Oz Chook Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 11, 2007
    Western Australia
    I've posted before regarding my increasingly peculiar sleeping habits of my lot....

    Initially it was because they would not sleep on a roost, instead they liked to snuggle up together on a shelf. 5 slept together on 1 shelf and 2 slept together on another shelf.

    Then....

    One (Sussex cross) decided to sleep outside on the roof of the coup, which is still sheltered a little with a tarp. But it's a rotten job to clean!

    Then...

    Another 3 (Rhode Island Red, Wyandotte and Light Sussex) decided it looked so good they've gone up there too!

    And now....

    My Silkie and Cochin Bantam have decided to sleep ouside too. But being so little they can't make it to the roof, so they sleep on the roof of the nesting box! At least the nesting box is being used for something, because we are stll waiting for eggs! hahaha

    But while you are all suffering with potential heatwaves, we are entering Winter. So it is around 46 degrees fahrenheit at night at the moment and will soon drop down to about 35 degrees. We tend to get a fair bit of wind and rain.

    My question is, should I start putting them in the coup and locking them in at night to keep them warm? They have always had free range to do as they please. The older ones are 10 months and the younger ones are nearly 7 months. I would have thought they would prefer it inside anyway....

    Apparently I don't think like a chicken or I wouldn't be asking all these silly questions!
     
  2. jessica117

    jessica117 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2008
    SE Tennessee
    I had problems with my girls sleeping wherever I didn't want them to. I ultimately ended up having to lock them up last fall at night to keep them out of the rain/snow (they still insisted on sleeping on the roof of one of the nesting boxes... imagine 8 standard sized hens squezed into a 2ft by 3 ft board.)

    This spring they have finally figured out that inside the coop is where they're supposed to sleep and I don't have any problems getting them in at night. I still lock them in at night but that is just for predator protection.

    Hope this helps!

    Jess
     
  3. jminnie0922

    jminnie0922 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 27, 2007
    At 10 and 7 months I would think that you should be getting eggs from just about all of them. If they are 24/7 free rangers they could of found a nice hiding spot to lay their eggs. If you could confine them for a time you might just get some eggs and also get them to come in the coop at night.

    JMHO
    Jeanne
     
  4. Oz Chook

    Oz Chook Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 11, 2007
    Western Australia
    [​IMG] Thanks, tonight they shall be tucked in weather they like it or not!

    On the egg front, I have looked EVERYWHERE (even on the roof!) to see where they could be laying but none! They are definately holding out and just enjoying the good life, will keep you posted! [​IMG]
     
  5. jessica117

    jessica117 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2008
    SE Tennessee
    On the subject of eggs... while I still let them sleep wherever they wanted to I had one hen that was laying in my neighbor's barn (didn't find that out till about a month later.) I'd say your girls are laying somewhere. Keeping them cooped up for a couple days may surprise you... in the good way of course!

    Good luck!
     
  6. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    I say go with the preferences of your birds... since they prefer to sleep together, well why not? just make a platform and use a cardboard box and fill that with shavings or sand... I have silkies (which dont roost or fly) ... I get low sided big ole cardboard boxes for them to sleep in and it works out great... I use it till I notice the bottom being damp and then throw it away and replace it with another... they are free!
     
  7. Oz Chook

    Oz Chook Out Of The Brooder

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    39
    Nov 11, 2007
    Western Australia
    Have been putting them inside at night (they have not been happy, it must be funny watching me chasing them to get them in in!!) We have a cold front coming through next week so I will persist with locking them inside until it pasts and see if they will stay inside after that.

    And definately no eggs hidden anywhere [​IMG]

    Will keep on waitin'....
     

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