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On the perrennial topic of getting them to roost . . .

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ScottyHOMEy, Sep 11, 2011.

  1. ScottyHOMEy

    ScottyHOMEy Songster

    Jun 21, 2011
    Waldo County, Maine
    We've had an epiphany here today/this evening/tonight.

    Epiphany nothing! It's a whole new world.

    The pullets hatched in June, twelve weeks ago last Friday. Four weeks ago a very handsome and commodious three-step roost was provided for their use and comfort.

    The darlings were ecstatic with the installation. But, until yesterday, it was little more than a jungle gym for them. They'd been using it and the rungs had accumulated some poop. As late as last night, they were still sleeping in a huddle in the litter on the floor.

    So today was coop cleaning day. I knocked the crust off the roost with a stiff broom before scooping out the shavings that hadn't begun to stink but, just the last couple of days, were starting to seem a little damp. Time and necessity (lack of planning and resources on my part) dictated, when they first moved into the Pullet Palace, that they share their space, partitioned off from the meat birds that went to freezer camp four weeks ago. They have since had run of the whole place.

    Cleaning out today . . . all the expected kerfuffle as I worked all the litter from my usual entrance to the other door in the back corner that I built for a cleanout. And the expected discomfiture as I shoveled the pile out the back door into the wheelbarrow.

    Fresh shavings all over. A good scrubbing to get the slimy feeling off that the waterer had begun to have, and a dumping/scraping out of mash at the bottom of their crumbles that had caked up. All fresh as a daisy.

    Took a driveby with the flashlight past the window of the coop a short while ago. All birds roosted and snoozing on the top rung. Not a temp thing. Their backs are about level with the vents on the low end of the roof. But they're all on one roost, snuggled right up.

    First night on the roost, and doing it like pros. No muss, no fuss. No instruction.

    Had begun to think they wouldn't get the hang of it.

    I'm pleased.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2011

  2. navasima

    navasima Songster

    Aug 6, 2011
    New Mexico

    Got that good feeling myself when mine headed up the ramp and roosted together all on their own. Kinda makes you think there was some point in busting your butt to provide their accomodations.[​IMG]
  3. Yonaton

    Yonaton Songster

    Jun 28, 2007
    West TN
    Heh heh...half my flock has had roosting figured out for about a week now (they're 13 weeks old now). The other half I've been putting up with the others every night but they just don't seem to 'get it'.

    The problem is, is that they're still actually a bit young (yes, I know some roost much younger, but in *my* experience over the past 20 years raising chickens is that at between 3 months and 4 months old is when they start to 'get it' best), and because of their size (jersey giants) I keep forgetting they're still pullets and cockerels (they're bigger than a standard full grown chicken now by at least a few inches).

    I'm hoping the other half of this flock 'gets it' soon though...I'm disabled and it's not getting any easier for me to keep going out there to 'train' them, heh.
  4. LOL...maybe they were afraid of the fresh and fluffy litter. I'll have to try that next time!!
  5. BoltonChicken

    BoltonChicken Songster

    Apr 14, 2011
    Bolton, Mississippi
    When will a flock of chickens start roosting? When they get ready.

    I was feeding my flock of five 19 week old BO's some treats outside of their coop/run at sunset yesterday when, at a time known but to them, they all turned, walked into the run, climbed up into their coop and roosted. They made the neatest little chicken muttering sounds as they settled in for the night.

    All is right in their little world. And in mine for that matter.
  6. the-bird-man

    the-bird-man Songster

    Oct 24, 2010
    land of the sun
    i am happy you all are having luck. i have 10 girls that are nearly 11 months old that got the roosting down perfect and have for months. but then i got 2 young girls that are around 16 weeks and the one will sometimes get on the roost but most of the time sits on the poop board under the older girls [​IMG] then the other girl likes to roost on top of a nest box. so each night i move them to the roost. i know they will likely get the hang of it one day but i just wish that day was yesterday lol

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