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Pullets won't use roost...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kiaya611, May 6, 2007.

  1. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    I have 9 and 10 week old pullets and a couple of cockerels and they don't go on the roost that I made for them. Allot of them still prefer the floor, but those that prefer to be above the floor, will roost on the front rail of the nest boxes. I did see a 1 or 2 roost on the edge board of the roost one time (which is a 2X4 on edge).

    The front rail of the nest boxes is a 2X2 and the roosts rails are 2X4s. In all that I read, it seemed to be the consensus that the wider board would be preferred by the chickens....Well, I am now not sure. I have posted pics of both the roost and the nest boxes to show you what I mean.

    [​IMG]
    ROOST

    [​IMG]
    PULLET ON FRONT RAIL OF NEST BOXES

    I thought maybe they are just too young to roost...but since quite a few of them (probably 15 or so) are using the front rail to roost, that sort of discounts that theory.

    Today, I decided to cut the 2X4s in half effectively making them 2X2s and see if that makes a difference. Other than that, I am not sure what to do.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks,
     
  2. houseofclucks

    houseofclucks Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 15, 2007
    Massachusetts
    Once they get use to your coop, they will be roosting all over the place. I had the same question with my pullets but once they got a little older and comfortable with their suroundings, they were fine. Good Luck!
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2007
  3. fowlweatherfriends

    fowlweatherfriends Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 14, 2007
    The Sunny South
    My birds like rounder roosts where they can wrap their "piggies" around the roost. I use natural round tree limbs.

    Yes, yours will most likely be hanging out all over the place very soon [​IMG].
     
  4. Poison Ivy

    Poison Ivy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2007
    Naples, Florida
    I had the last batch of chicks that wouldn't roost only wanted to sleep on floor or inside nest box. So I went in after it was dark and sat each one on the roost pole. Then again the next night for the few that didn't get the idea the first time around. After that they found their place on the roost and never layed on the floor again. I had 20 of them to do! [​IMG]
     
  5. allen wranch

    allen wranch Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    They may have too many choices to roost on at this early age and they are roosting where they feel safest ??? Pick them up and put them where you want them a few nights and see what happens.
     
  6. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    Well, last night, I tried to put the chickens on the roost....it was something out of Laurel and Hardy...every time I got a few of them up there, and tried to put up more, the others would jump off. This lasted for quite a while until I gave up. Trying to deal with 42 chickens is not easy...

    I gave some thought to what you said about having too many choices and decided to remove some of them. I lowered the rail in front of the nest boxes (designed to do that for cleaning purposes) and I put chicken wire in front of all of the nest boxes so they can't get into them for now. Now they have 2 choices. The floor or the roost. We will see which wins out. If the floor still wins, I am truly at a loss.
     
  7. Critter Crazy

    Critter Crazy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 19, 2007
    Binghamton, NY
    Firstly are your roosts higher than the nest boxes?? If they arent, you might want to think about raising the roosts.

    My birds prefer smaller roosts, mine are 1x2's the 1 inch side up, and the edges rounded.
     
  8. allen wranch

    allen wranch Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    Give them some time. My 10 week olds all started on the floor, then slowly a few ended up on the roost, then some more. The last time I sneaked up on them, most were on the roost in the outside run (a place I never saw them on during the day) a couple were on the inside roost, and one was on the floor. I am going to check tonight and see if that last one made it off the floor. (My runs are all double covered in wire and the birds can go in and out 12/7.)
     
  9. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    The roosts are about 28" off of the ground (supposed to be 24", but I mis-calculated)...the nest box rail and bottom of nest box (where they can get to) is about 18" from the floor.

    I checked last night when i went to close the chicken door and there were about 10 chickens on the roost! I hope this becomes a trend and they all start "following the leader". If that happens, by the time they need the nest boxes, I can uncover them and there will no longer be an issue.

    Still in my learning curve...I guess that goes on forever in allot of ways... [​IMG]
     
  10. bmarshall61

    bmarshall61 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 11, 2007
    Give them some time, this is acceptable chicken behavior, they will in their own time "go to roost". I like 2"X2" for roost but 2X4 should work. I have one sex link that is 5 months old that insist on roosting on the water trough. I think she has baptised herself more than once.
     

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