Paulette went AWOL

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Johnboy78, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. Johnboy78

    Johnboy78 Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2011
    I'd posted this winter how Paulette, a redshouldered yokohama didn't go into the coop and spent the night by herself somewhere during a 15 degree night. After that I threw scratch in the run to get them all in at dusk, then did a head count and locked them in. They've become accustomed to the routine and when they are about done for the day they hang out by the back door waiting for me to get the scratch and lead them to the run for the night.

    Night before last Paulette wasn't there for the scratch. I locked the rest of them in. Yesterday morning Paulette was waiting out on the deck for me to let the others out and put out some feed. She scratched around with the rest during the day. She started acting a little strange though during the afternoon, ruffling out her head feathers, not acting her usual placid self, then wandered off and disappeared. I couldn't find her anywhere, she never showed at the end of the day.

    Today she is a no-show. The other seven are roaming the yard in the drizzle, stuffing their little bodies.

    My neighbors are 1/2 to 1 acre lots, wooded neighborhood, 2 adjoining yards are not exactly landscaped.
    She got "broody" about a month ago, kept sitting on everyones eggs. (Yokohamas are not really layers)
    Then she seemed to come out of it. The number of eggs dropped on Easter, from 6-8 to 3-5 a day.
    None of the birds appear to be molting. I thought they had made a "renegade" nest somewhere in a neighbor's yard.

    I've got a 6 foot fence around my yard which she can get over fairly easily and like the Hamburgs she's good at squeezing under where she can find a gap.

    Anyone have a chicken do this before? They are 2 weeks shy of a year old.
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    I'd almost be wiling to bet that there is a hidden nest somewhere and that she has once again gone broody.
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop

    Most definitely.
  4. Johnboy78

    Johnboy78 Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2011
    After nearly 2 months without rain we got a nice deluge yesterday,
    at least 5 inches, and we were leaving to go out and I figured since it
    was pouring out I'd put them in early before we left.
    So I led the scratch parade to the run and just as I was putting the little bucket
    back into the storage container Paulette walked out from under the deck and hopped up.
    I led her back to the run and got her in for the night.

    Today she disappeared again and no sign of her tonight. Can't see anything under the deck.

    Got hold of some tenex plastic chicken wire, got half the underdeck access blocked so far.
    When I know she's not under there I'll block the rest.

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