Roosting in the rafters?


9 Years
Jan 9, 2013
Suffolk, VA
Does anyone else have this problem? Our girls have 3 very nice roosting bars, ample space for the 14 girls. Yet, they all seem to risk their lives nightly to sleep on the roof rafters. Getting up and down seems to be quite laborious for them...I'm afraid they'll get hurt. We've had a few fall from the rafters, in the summer I don't use shavings in their coop, just a linoleum floor with a dusting of powdered PDZ. Comments are welcome!

Pork Pie

Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Jan 30, 2015
How high are your roosts? Could you block access to the rafters? Deep bedding, such as dry grass clippings could help provide a softer landing.

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Howard E

5 Years
Feb 18, 2016
Can you share a photo of the roosting bars they have now, and also the rafters they are using?

Mine were doing the same thing.....trying to fly up from their roost bars to the top plate on the back wall, and would crash and burn in the process. So I raised the roost bars a foot to put their heads about even with the plate and all that stopped.

Basically, consider this......actions speak louder than words, and since they can't talk, all you can do is take what they are doing as their way of telling you they don't like what you gave them and they want something else.

The classic example is birds that will abandon and refuse to use a dinky little death trap coop that looks good to us, but not to them. Instead, they will use the adjacent kid's play set, roosting up in the high fort, even on the roof of it. Its not even a coop and we don't want them up there, but that is where they want to be just the same. To fight with them over that is like pushing a soft rope uphill. Better to realize and then mimic what they are trying to use and all will be happier for it.

jim c

6 Years
Dec 6, 2013
this is a problem that is not as bad as you think it is. first thing to remember is that chicken want and will roost as high as they can its in their dna. the quick fix it to make the rafters inaccessible to them. now chicken wire is a good idea but remember that they are used to using the rafters to roost on and even with the wire they can still see them. a cheap way to fix this is use a painters cloth (made of cotton) I have used this on rafters and it will hold up for years.

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