Perching for the night

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jdoane, Dec 22, 2013.

  1. jdoane

    jdoane Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not sure what forum was best for the question but thought I try here.

    My young flock of 5 pullets have me a little puzzled. This is their first winter. They are managing very well. I'm not particularly worried as they seem to know what they are doing better than I do. LOL. 3 of my 20 week olds are goofy about perching. I've noticed when it's really cold they sleep up on the perch with the other 2. But if it's warmer they want to sleep on the floor in the sand.

    Before the cold weather hit I tried to put them up on the perch at night. But they would kind of freak out and hop down. Then the cold weather hit and they were all up on the perch cuddled together so I thought they finally "figured it out". But now we are having a warmer spell in New England and those 2 or 3 are back on the floor at night.

    Does this make sense to anyone? I'm just letting them do their thing.
     
  2. Theda's Mom

    Theda's Mom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've got seventeen youngsters (hatched in late July) and recently introduced them into the "grown-up" coop with my three older hens. The chicklets didn't have a real roost in their nursery coop and don't quite understand what do with the one in their new home. They climb all over it by day, but still insist on huddling together in a corner on the floor by night. Sooner or later, they'll figure things out.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2013
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Sometimes it takes them a while. If they are being pecked when they try to roost, then they will keep to the floor. How long is your roost? Also, you want to make sure it's wide enough for them to roost and cover their feet with their feathers. How wide is your roost? Some heavy breeds really need a wide roost. Mine are 2X4's wide side up.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2013
  4. jdoane

    jdoane Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have two roosts totaling 7 feet of roost space for 5 pullets. They are about 2 inches wide.

    I had thought of those things but then the issue resolved when it was cold for several weeks and every one was roosting (with extra roost space available). And it's not my lowest birds in the pecking order. It has really seemed weather related. Could that be a factor?
     
  5. Theda's Mom

    Theda's Mom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be weather related, but honestly, unless there are indications that someone is beating up on someone else and you have plenty of roosting space if they so desire, I wouldn't worry. Hens can be notional. That's part of what makes them such enjoyable company.
     
  6. jdoane

    jdoane Chillin' With My Peeps

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    very good point. I do always come in laughing and rolling my eyes!
     

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