Rejoice the coop is done.....BUT...

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by brounii, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. brounii

    brounii Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 16, 2010
    Jonesborough, TN
    Hi everyone....I need a little BYC help, lol. We finally finished up our coop and let our girls out in the run for the first time yesterday. I expected curiosity and hesitancy from the chickens, which was right on, but it's we've found that they don't want to get off the ramp and onto the sand in the run. I'm guessing they don't like the feel of it? What should I do? Should I just be patient and hope that they'll eventually work up the courage to enjoy the run, or should I force them out into the run and take the ramp away till they get use to the feeling of the sand on their little tootsies, lol.
    Here are some pictures:


    This is my 4yr old son showing off the new coop!
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    Here is when we opened the pop door for the first time yesterday:
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    Here is our 4yr old trying to coax them out of the coop
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    Today, it's the same old thing......ramp only, no sand on tootsies!
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    Does anyone have any suggestions? I'd love to hear them! [​IMG]
     
  2. Buff Hooligans

    Buff Hooligans Scrambled

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    Don't worry - all it will take is one bold one to make the move and the rest will follow. The sand itself is not a problem, as a matter of fact, it's the best choice for a chicken run. Your flock is gorgeous, and the coop too.
     
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Ooooh, that sand is SO white! It doesn't look like pine shavings! It doesn't look like the ground! We were safe in our coop! There's that sand out there! What if it is hiding something? What if it IS something?



    Chickens are.... well, chicken. It's part of their "I'm prey, I need to be careful" make-up. Buff Hooligans is right: it's like pushing the first penguin off the ice flow to see if any sharks are hunting there. First chicken that makes it safely out of the coop onto the sand will encourage the rest of them to venture out.

    Anything new is suspect. Sometimes a new food will terrify them - I've been known to offer my birds Killer Peas. Luckily, KPs have a short half-life and become deactivated and edible pretty quickly.
     
  4. Buff Hooligans

    Buff Hooligans Scrambled

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    Gry is right too. Evil White Sand!
     
  5. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    Easy peasy - scatter around some scratch and their regular feed, perhaps some spaghetti or even crickets. Chickens are greedier than they are cowards.

    Gorgeous coop, btw. [​IMG]
     
  6. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Opelousas, Louisiana
    Beautiful Coop. Beautiful Chickens. Let us know when they dive off. [​IMG]
     
  7. brounii

    brounii Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 16, 2010
    Jonesborough, TN
    Quote:[​IMG]:yuckyuck:yuckyuck:yuckyuck:yuckyuck That just had me on the floor rolling! Thank you for that [​IMG]
     
  8. brounii

    brounii Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 16, 2010
    Jonesborough, TN
    Quote:We've tried spreading their regular feed around, but to no avail. I guess we'll have to get some more treats to try to lure them out, lol.
     
  9. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    DFW
    Try scattering some scratch or birdseed. They'll get use to the sand quickly enough. You're going to love how easy it is to keep the run clean. I use a reptile sand scoop taped to a long handle.

    Your chickens will also soon discover the joys of taking a dustbath in a sand run. Stand back, the sand is going to fly!
     
  10. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Ontario, Canada
    Yes, chickens are frequently like that in new situations.

    You know you can just take them out and manually PUT them onto the sand. With some food scattered around. Mind you, it is possible you may need to manually put them back in the coop at night, too, but you may have to ANYHOW even if THEY are the ones deciding to step onto the sand.

    I have done this with my chickens at various times -- gotten tired of them being "chicken" and just chucked them out the popdoor to figure it out -- and you know what, it does speed up the process and has never seemed to cause them any lasting psychological damage [​IMG]

    So it's up to you, but this is certainly a reasoable option (although waiting is a reasonable option too, although it may take days or even weeks)

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     

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