Roosting

Rommy

Songster
Apr 17, 2019
96
167
117
NC
Was cking some things on the back porch and in the yard and decided to take a look at my chicky girls at night. When I shown the flashlight in the coop they were not on their roost but huddled next to the door. Does anyone know what could be causing this? I am posting pictures of my coop and any suggestions would be appreciated and considered. There is a wired window next to their roost, as you can see, for air flow and breeze. Wondering if something may be spooking them from the other side? Any thoughts? Thanks. :)
 

Attachments

  • Coop1 (1).jpg
    Coop1 (1).jpg
    409.5 KB · Views: 16
  • Coop1 (2).jpg
    Coop1 (2).jpg
    374.1 KB · Views: 16
  • Coop1 (3).jpg
    Coop1 (3).jpg
    365.1 KB · Views: 17
  • Coop1 (4).jpg
    Coop1 (4).jpg
    329.5 KB · Views: 16

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,662
11,145
611
North Florida
Have they ever roosted on the roost?
The roost looks pretty close to the wall, so it may not be a comfortable distance for them. If their tails or heads are up against the wall they won't like it. Also, that jump is a lot. A ramp or something that steps up would be easier for them, even stacked hay bales. I try to keep jumps to 18" or less to minimize leg and foot injuries. They tend to jump down, and that's a long jump. I saw another roost a few months ago, similar situation, once they moved the roost farther from the wall they started using it. I think I would enlarge the lip on the nest boxes, wide enough for them to walk it, move the ramp to the other side, and make another ramp for your roost, or stack hay bales. I think I would lower the roost also, and make it farther from the wall.
Another observation, the spaces in boards in the wall are large enough for mice and snakes to get in, I would cover with hardware cloth. And that ledge is a perfect rodent run. I wouldn't be surprised if you start seeing mouse droppings along it. if there is feed, even undigested grains in the droppings, mice will come.
 

Rommy

Songster
Apr 17, 2019
96
167
117
NC
They are just shy of 5 months old. They have been using the roost during the day when I am out there; but just happened to find them at the door the other night; which I thought was strange. I wanted to roost higher than their nest box. If I replaced the 2x4 with a sturdy limb, do you think that would serve them better?
 

DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
33,160
269,695
1,642
NY Southern Tier
My Coop
My Coop
They are just shy of 5 months old. They have been using the roost during the day when I am out there; but just happened to find them at the door the other night; which I thought was strange. I wanted to roost higher than their nest box. If I replaced the 2x4 with a sturdy limb, do you think that would serve them better?
You can lower your roost to just maybe 5 or 6" above the height of the nest in the nest box, not the top and they will use it. I would make sure you have at least 12" from the center of the roost to the wall and you can also make it longer.
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,662
11,145
611
North Florida
Turning the 2x4 the other way may help, the wide side parallel to the ground rather than up and down. All my roosts are that way. They can balance easier and rest their bodies on their feet to keep them warm in the winter. Since they are 5 months old and reaching their adult size, the distance to the wall may be your biggest issue.
 

chickens really

Crazy Mother of Goats
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Sep 8, 2015
62,663
109,134
1,657
The Funny Farm....Alberta, Canada
They are just shy of 5 months old. They have been using the roost during the day when I am out there; but just happened to find them at the door the other night; which I thought was strange. I wanted to roost higher than their nest box. If I replaced the 2x4 with a sturdy limb, do you think that would serve them better?
No that won't change the behaviour. This type might help..
IMG_0747.JPG
 

Rommy

Songster
Apr 17, 2019
96
167
117
NC
Have they ever roosted on the roost?
The roost looks pretty close to the wall, so it may not be a comfortable distance for them. If their tails or heads are up against the wall they won't like it. Also, that jump is a lot. A ramp or something that steps up would be easier for them, even stacked hay bales. I try to keep jumps to 18" or less to minimize leg and foot injuries. They tend to jump down, and that's a long jump. I saw another roost a few months ago, similar situation, once they moved the roost farther from the wall they started using it. I think I would enlarge the lip on the nest boxes, wide enough for them to walk it, move the ramp to the other side, and make another ramp for your roost, or stack hay bales. I think I would lower the roost also, and make it farther from the wall.
Another observation, the spaces in boards in the wall are large enough for mice and snakes to get in, I would cover with hardware cloth. And that ledge is a perfect rodent run. I wouldn't be surprised if you start seeing mouse droppings along it. if there is feed, even undigested grains in the droppings, mice will come.
Thanks for the suggestions. I will talk to my hubby about the changes. I already thought the lip for the nest boxes was too narrow. I know the spaces look larger than they are. Hubby left no gaps even though it may look that way; what looks like gaps are secured and covered on the other side. Hubby made my coop out of his lean to against our storage shed. He even put the run fencing 6" under ground and bent inward to avoid predators digging in. They have been out there since May with no issues, mice and (knock on wood) haven't even had problems with flies. The other side of the lean to behind them where the air flow windows are is a storage area with tools, wheel barrows, etc. and open to the woods behind us. I am wondering if something has spooked them at night. We do have a lot of neighbors dogs that are allowed to run free at night and I see them on our Ring in our carport area so I know they go down that way as well. I will share your suggestions with hubby and see about making some adjustments. Thanks so much for your input!
 

MANNA-PRO

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom