Retraining chickens to sleep in the coop.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Pdxile, Oct 17, 2014.

  1. Pdxile

    Pdxile Out Of The Brooder

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    About 2 months ago I had a daytime raid by a raccon who grabbed a chicken right out of its nesting box. I have since killed the raccon, but 3 out of the remaining 4 will not sleep in the coop, preferring to roost in the trees and laying somewhere outdoors. I think they are traumatized. I have tried to retrain them by tricking them into the coop with treats, then shutting them up for a few days in the coop on several occasions. (It is a large 8x10 "hoop coop) so they have plenty of room ). Will this behavior last forever or can I do something else?
    Thank you,
    Helen
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2014
  2. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They don't think the coop is safe. If you haven't fixed how the raccoon got in, they're right.

    Usually the recommendation is to coop them up a couple days and they'll sort it out, but you've already tried that.
     
  3. Pdxile

    Pdxile Out Of The Brooder

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    The coop is pretty bulletproof but the raccoon came during the day when the door was wide-open. Can chickens smell danger or fear? Maybe they can still smell something in the coop?

    As an aside, I'd tried to catch that raccon in a live trap and nothing worked... Until I tried marshmallows!
     
  4. Pdxile

    Pdxile Out Of The Brooder

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    Yay! One more chicken (two now) sleeping in the coop on its own volition. The other two were easily plucked from a tree and placed inside. The retraining is working a little.
     
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Keep them penned in coop for three solid days. Late in fourth day let them out about 30 minutes before dark. Repeat day for to make certain they have good handle on roost site.
     
  6. Pdxile

    Pdxile Out Of The Brooder

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    So only let them out late in the day? I've done the 4 days in the coop before, but not the second step. That is interesting, I'll try it.
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Yes. let them out only late in the day at first. That ensures they are close to entrance when time to return.
     
  8. Pdxile

    Pdxile Out Of The Brooder

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    That makes a lot of sense!!!
     

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