Pullets not roosting?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chicksurreal, Dec 7, 2014.

  1. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, we have 27 pullets that we got as day old chicks, they are now 15 weeks old. They grew up in the coop that they reside in.

    We took the warming lights out of their coop when they were 8 weeks old and only 8-10 of them will roost at night. The rest of them bunch up in the same corner on the coop floor every night since the lights were taken out, fighting and rustling around for position. Is there something I can do to help them start roosting, or will they eventually adjust on their own? Do they need help?

    Our first flock didn't have this issue (they are in another coop), so I don't know what's going on here. Thanks for any help...
     
  2. Amina

    Amina Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wait til after it's dark, and then go out and pick them up and stick them on the roost. Do that for several nights in a row and they ought to get the hint. It might also help to temporarily block off that corner, to disrupt their normal routine. Good luck!
     
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  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Is there plenty of room lengthwise on the roost....like at least 8-12" per bird?

    Are the roosts wide and flat(2x4, wide side up, works great)?

    Is the roost easy to access, both getting up(head room) and getting down(fly/jump off with crashing into a wall)?

    Pics of your coop and roost might help folks help you find a solution.
     
  4. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, I'll try that!
     
  5. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, plenty of room for all of them to roost easily, I'll try to get some pics today, just to make sure there isn't some problem with the design.

    All of the roosts are 2x4, flat side up with plenty of head room. This is the first large coop we've built, so the roosts might need to be moved around a bit.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    They might just need some 'training' as Amina suggests.
     
  7. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's just odd that some do it but most don't. I'll try putting them on roosts tonight ands see if it helps. Thanks!
     
  8. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, epic fail on putting the pullets on the roost tonight.

    They fought me, even in the dark. I'd put one on a roost and a few seconds later hear a *thunk* as she hit the floor of the coop. We put them up on the roosts numerous times and most of them ended up jumping down.

    Doing it again tomorrow night...[​IMG]
     
  9. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

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    Twenty-seven is an awfully big handful. You do have your work cut out for you. But they will eventually get the hang of it.

    Meanwhile, what I do is place my pullets on the perch and rest my hand softly on their backs, speaking softly, and going, "shh, shh, shh." It helps to calm them and they will be more likely to remain on the perch. Once they settle down low on the perch and lower their heads, remove your hand. Keep it up until they relax and stay there.

    But with twenty-seven, you're not going to be able to get them all to perch at once. Why not just settle for six each night? Once those six are roosting, start in with another six. And odds are in your favor that more will catch on as they see their mates happily roosting up on the perch, and more will hop up on their own. I'd bet that all will be roosting within two weeks.
     
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  10. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks!

    I did rest my hand on their backs a little and whisper "Shhh, ssh, it's okay sweetie", must be an instinctual thing... A few did stay, but most jumped down after I removed my hand. Lots of them wanted to just stay on my hand as I put them on the roost. I guess they felt safer.

    I think you're right, it's not going to happen in one night, I know that. If a couple of them stayed up there, I should feel successful. Chickens are such creatures of habit, it takes awhile to make changes.
     

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