Roost Issues


In the Brooder
Mar 25, 2017
Western NY
Hello. I just made a 6.5'x12' coop for my 8 week old chickens by partitioning off part of our barn. The 24 hens are mixed breeds (Buff Orp, Golden Comet, Barred Rock and RIR). I made the roosts in a ladder design from 22" up to about 6' (there are 4 total, the lowest one was unoccupied and not in the photo). This is their second night in the coop, and I went to check on them and saw two hens getting pushed off the highest roost (despite plenty of room to spare) and falling to the ground. There were no injuries that I saw, and they both had their wings out to lessen the impact, but I'm wondering if I should re-think my design and make the top roost lower to prevent future injury.

Any thoughts or comments are much appreciated.


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Your going to need more roosts, or less chickens. All will want to roost on the higher roost, and will squabble to get there.
I would remove the top roost and make 2-3 roosts the same height at the top about 12 inches apart, so there's more roost room. Hopefully you understand what I'm explaining.
at the top of my bantam roosts there's 2 roosts at the same height so everyone can get to the top. So something similar would work better for you perhaps.
That makes sense. I'm just not sure how to attach them...but you've certainly given me something to think about. I just checked on them again and all but 3 are on the top two roosts so I think you're right that they will all vie for the same height. Worth re-working it. (I'm thinking sort of like this photo, just flipped with three long roosts and a ladder leading up to them, since the coop is long and narrow)

Thanks for the tips.


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I started out with this design in the new coop last year. I got the idea from a BYC post. I thought it was perfect. Lots of room and easy to clean underneath. The chickens hated it! Everybody crowded to the top rung to get a window seat. It lasted 2 weeks.
When I put all the roosts at the same level, there was no more fighting for the "best spot". It's still easy to clean under.
Thank you for posting this. I'm working on a coop design and keep changing my roost plan. Was thinking of doing the ladder type with hinges on the wall end so I could pull it up for cleaning. Will re-think that plan. Birds and cats always like the high spots, my parrot hates his cage even being moved to a slightly lower height than normal. He is quite vocal about it.
I keep seeing they like to roost near a window. We were thinking to keep our roost away from the window so when they sleep during the summer and it open they will not be in a drafty place and we can keep the windows open at night to keep it cool. Does a draft in the summer not matter its more winter time?

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