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pullets sleeping on the poop board

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by GardenWeasel, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. GardenWeasel

    GardenWeasel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 23, 2009
    Henry, TN
    Gross. I had 26 adult hens and in April added 18 new chicks, 2 of them are roosters. Well the roosters made themselves a place on the roost pronto. Some of the pullets make it up on the roost but a group of 5-6 sleep in a pile on THE POOP BOARD. I have three high roosts and one lower but still higher than the board. 4-5 of the young ones sleep on the low one. Why would the rest prefer to sleep in poop and get pooped on all night? Have tried putting them on the roost but they hop off. Any body got suggestions? I can't keep any shavings on that board with all the nightly shenanigans. It can't be healthy for them.
     
  2. foxy2320

    foxy2320 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 15, 2012
    Oregon
    Sometimes it takes a while for them to figure it out. When I first got all my girls, they all slept on the coop floor, and slowly they started figuring out the roosts. There was always a group that slept on the floor, until one of them had to be culled for nerve damage. That night the rest of them were up on the roost. I think they knew that she couldn't make it up there, so they stayed with her. They got pooped on a few times, but they'll figure it out eventually. Obviously you can't hold them on the roost all night, so unless you notice any negative effects or illnesses caused from it I wouldn't worry too much.
     
  3. GardenWeasel

    GardenWeasel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 23, 2009
    Henry, TN
    Thanks. I think while my husband is home this weekend (trucker) I will enlist his aid on putting them on the roost after total darkness cause I can't hold the flashlight and pick up chickens at the same time. Maybe if they wake up there it will feel good.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Don't do anything until you watch them at roosting time.

    Stand back and observe the roosting dynamics. Chances are the pullets are getting bullied off the perch, and end up on the poop board where they just resign themselves to spending the night.

    If the pullets happen to be a heavy breed, such as Cochin or Brahma, they may dislike high perches and will gravitate to lower ones.

    If your problem is one of bullying, you can partition off a length of perch and encourage the pullets to roost on that side. II've had a lot of success doing that.

    I've built a couple of very low perches, eight inches off the ground, and even some of the light breeds prefer them. I have had a problem before that with them trying to sleep on the poop boards, and they were getting quite a bit of bullying when trying to roost. Now everyone is happy on a perch.

    By observing behavior, you can gather important information to help in solving any problem.
     

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