Pullets acting strange today

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by drnewman, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. drnewman

    drnewman Hatching

    Jun 20, 2011
    We have 6 Buff Orpington pullets. They are 16 weeks old and this is the first time we've raised chickens (we were kids our parents raised chickens but we never have). We've had them since they were 4 days old and they've been healthy and happy.

    Every morning when I go out about 6:30 am to let them out of the house into the run, they are already waiting on me. Today they weren't and they won't come out of the house. I coaxed 4 down this afternoon but as soon as I walked off, they went right back in. They have never done this before. Two were in nesting boxes, they don't often lay around in them.

    I noticed a couple of them had their mouths open, after reading some on here, I went back out and I don't think their nares are clogged, at least as far as I can see. And they may not have had their mouths opent to breathe at all, maybe they just had it open and I am over thinking things. They appear healthy, they just won't go out.

    Is it normal for them all to stay in the coop? I close them up at night, so no animal can bother them. But, it made me think they might be scared for some reason.

    Thanks for any thoughts on it, I wanted hens for eggs, never thought we'd get so attached to them!

  2. Chic-n-farmer

    Chic-n-farmer Showers of Blessings

    Are you seeing gnats around them?
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    Kind of sounds like they might be hot......What's the weather like your way?
  4. so lucky

    so lucky Songster

    Jan 31, 2011
    SE Missouri
    That seems strange to me, too. The question about the gnats is a good one. Are they too hot? Could they all be coming down with something? Can you tell if they have healthy-looking poop? A snake in the run? A hawk loitering in a nearby tree? Do the girls appear nervous? Too windy outside?
  5. drnewman

    drnewman Hatching

    Jun 20, 2011
    I haven't seen any gnats around them.

    The weather is hot, its about 90 degrees but today the wind is blowing and it doesn't feel too bad. Last week they stayed out when it was 96 degrees. They normally stay out in this type of wind. Their coop has an area under it, that they normally lay in during the heat of the day, I've assumed to still get some breeze but to be shaded.

  6. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Hot, gnats, scared by a nocturnal predator? Keep an eye on them, and hopefully they are OK.
  7. drnewman

    drnewman Hatching

    Jun 20, 2011
    Nope, I checked for snakes, there isn't one. The area under the coop is fenced with wire that has very small holes, just for that reason, the wire is underneath, also. Only a little snake could get in it but I'm sure there wasn't one there. Didn't see a hawk. We do have some big hawks around (covered the top of the run for that reason). The run goes around my garden (I see people call it a chicken moat), so they are always ready to get out and eat bugs the abundance of bugs in the morning.

    They didn't seem nervous, 2 were on the roost, 2 on top of the laying nests/boxes, one was laying on top of the boxes and one was eating, last time I went out there. Poop looks normal.

    We have three labs and they are good at keeping anything out of our yard that doesn't belong here, and they don't bother the chickens, they'll lay by the fence and the girls peck at them when they get the chance, so I really don't think an animal scared them.
  8. drnewman

    drnewman Hatching

    Jun 20, 2011
    oops meant two were in the laying nests, and one was on top.

    Thanks for the answers, I'll just hope they felt like laying around today. Maybe they'll come out this evening. They usually make a bee line to the far end of the run when they hear the back door open. Its just so odd that they aren't doing their routine stuff today, at all. I'm probably over reacting.
  9. N&MSchroeder

    N&MSchroeder Songster

    Feb 4, 2011
    SE Idaho
    [​IMG] Keep us posted on how they act tomorrow! Hopefully, they are just feeling lazy today! [​IMG]

  10. Hedgfun

    Hedgfun In the Brooder

    know how you feel, my bovans nera pullet not acting right today, not been out to eat much today and stayed in the coop looking all sorry for herself. im wondering if she is getting ready to lay for first time or she has eaten something thats made her feel bad.. poo all normal.

    may be me just being paranoid lol

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