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Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Hanna101, Jan 21, 2011.

  1. Hanna101

    Hanna101 In the Brooder

    Jan 21, 2011
    I have a question BYC ??? What hapens when you leave your chicken free ranging at night?? ,and what would you do???[​IMG][​IMG]

  2. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    Chickens will not free range at night. Once dusk starts to fall, the chicken is looking for a place to roost.

    Chickens have very, very poor night vision. A chicken will not see a predator, and cannot see well enough to escape without running into a wall/tree/object.

    The best place to roost, of course is a secure coop. But chickens can and will roost in trees, on the fence, or even lay along the coop wall (if locked out).

    I have all my birds roost in coops.
  3. SierraStarRanch

    SierraStarRanch Hatching

    Jan 19, 2011
    Depending on your locale, you may find feathers and not much else in the morning. We let our birds free range every day and forgot to close the pen door at dusk one night only to find the remains of 8 geese, 1 rooster and just feathers left from 6 chickens after a pack of coyotes came onto the property last Christmas '09. I suppose it might be safe if the property is completely fenced 6' high but if you know there are coyotes or racoons in the area, they are probably looking for opportunities at nighttime and they will come by at some point in time. Our chickens go into their enclosure at dusk on their own so they don't seem to have a desire to stay out "on the range" at night. We had 2 that liked to roost up in a tree above the back porch and they would sometimes be missing when we did our evening head-count but they have stopped flying up there. Good luck
  4. Carolyn

    Carolyn Songster

    Apr 6, 2008
    If I have one that does not "come home to roost" I try to locate it and entice, herd or otherwise try to get it in the safe area. If this doesn't work I wait for it to get darker and go out and catch it. I have an outside light that I can turn on and off that gives a gentle glow to most of my yard. I use a fishing net if I can't just approach from the back and pick it up.

    Sometimes they make it thru the first night and are back at crack of dawn wanting in the coop. It depends on why they didn't come home in the first place. Some just like to make their own rules. I have never caught one like that and sent it to freezer camp but wished I had because some thing else got to eat it instead of me. I live in a wooded area and have never had one last here over a night or two out of the coop or at least behind an electric net fence.
  5. bel

    bel Songster

    Jan 15, 2010
    East bay
    Even if you are in an suburban area you will still face predators like raccoons. Chickens roost and become an easy sitting target for anything that wants to eat it.
  6. midget_farms

    midget_farms Songster

    Apr 15, 2008
    Dunlap Illinois
    I've had a few not make it home in time for the door to close. They will by instinct find a secure place (if one is available) to hide for the night. Mine have always rejoined the flock in the morning.

    I have had a few that just snuggled up to the door too. I had to put them inside.

    If its just one night - there is a good chance a predator doesn't know she is there & wont find her.

    If its every single night - when a predator wanders through they will catch the scent & come back often looking & eventually get one.
  7. TrystInn

    TrystInn Songster

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    Mine roost in the trees when they don't want to back to the coop. Drives me bonkers. Anything could eat them out there!

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