1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login, otherwise join BYC here!

Overnight roosting

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Harvey01, Nov 20, 2016.

  1. Harvey01

    Harvey01 New Egg

    2
    0
    7
    Nov 20, 2016
    My chickens huddle in a corner of my outside run as opposed to coming inside the coop where the roosting bar is available to them. With winter temperatures dropping here in NJ, should I be concerned with them staying outdoors at night? Why haven't they decided to seek the shelter of the weather?
     
  2. FridayYet

    FridayYet Innocent Bystander

    12,314
    2,556
    421
    Mar 3, 2011
    The Land of Enchantment
    Yes, you probably should be concerned with winter coming on. How old are your chickens?

    You might try locking them in the coop for a few days until it feels like home. Also, try to find out why they don't go in. Is it too dark? Does it have enough ventilation? Sometimes adding a window in the coop can really help.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Harvey01

    Harvey01 New Egg

    2
    0
    7
    Nov 20, 2016
    My chickens are almost 7 months and I've had them for about 3 months. I have thought about locking them up at night but wasn't sure if that was the natural thing to do. There is plenty of ventilation and light and a long roosting 2x4 for all 9 to roost. I just thought they would navigate themselves out of the wind and cold by now.
     
  4. FridayYet

    FridayYet Innocent Bystander

    12,314
    2,556
    421
    Mar 3, 2011
    The Land of Enchantment
    They are creatures of habit and are probably used to sleeping in the run. To change that behavior, you'll need to put them on the roosts every night for several nights or lock them in for a few days. Did they ever roost inside at night? In my case, I would have put them inside starting the first day.

    Once they learn it's nicer in the coop, they'll start putting hemselves to bed in there.

    Sometimes I have to train the juvies to go inside. But if I don't, they could become coyote food. They need to sleep in the coop for their own protection.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life Out of the Woods Premium Member

    84,499
    3,781
    646
    Jun 15, 2012
    Washington
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
     
  6. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    81,069
    8,161
    766
    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Agree totally with Friday Yet. Chickens are far from brilliant. They have to be taught good habits. You can lock them in the coop for a few days with water & food, so they realize it is HOME. If they don't go in a dusk and roost, they may be afraid of a dark coop. Sometimes a small light on timer is all they need till they adapt. Have it come on at dusk and go off after 20 minutes or so.
     
  7. ChickNanny13

    ChickNanny13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,909
    355
    236
    Jun 23, 2013
    Hilo, HI

    Totally agree! When I got my 5 Blue Wynadottes about a month ago, they were 28 wks. They would not roost at night, so I TRIED to put them on the roost at dusk. Ha ha, they instantly flew off as I put one up, I gave up. Left them alone, next morning didn't see poop on the poop board but found a bunch in a corner. They're enclosure is secure so I wasn't worried about them sleeping on the ground. The next night I closed them up & heard a bunch of wings flapping & squawking, peeked in & they were up on the roost figuring out who's sleeping where. Been good since....Love that poop board [​IMG]
     
  8. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    25,645
    1,828
    463
    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Hello from Kansas, Harvey01, and :welcome! Great to have you with us! Good luck with your roosting issue and thanks for joining BYC. :cool:
     
  9. CuzChickens

    CuzChickens CountryChick

    5,448
    1,216
    306
    Apr 24, 2016
    Virginia
    Hello there, and welcome to Backyard Chickens! I am so glad you joined us, I do hope you will make yourself at home here. Enjoy BYC!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by