Hi All! My husband and I are new to keeping chickens and had have had a great time raising our 4 pullets for the past several months. We have a Silver-Gray Dorking, a Leghorn, a Barred Rock and a Campine. Everything has been dandy until just recently... Our hens/pullets have begun to screech an ungodly and scratchy scream that sounds somewhat like "crrraaaaaa!" at the top of their lungs every morning around 730am! We live in a residential neighborhood and have neighbors in close proximity who most likely hear everything. I have no idea what to do to stop this behavior and was hoping any of you experts out there can help. Here are some key points about my hens, maybe this info will help decipher what's going on and what I can do about it: * 2 of the 4 (dorking & leghorn) have just started laying eggs (probably two weeks now), my barred rock is doing the "submissive squat" and also seems to be getting ready to lay soon. My campine is still young, her comb and wattle are barely there. * all four have plenty of space in the coop & run to perch, eat, dust bathe and roost... I also have two nest boxes at their disposal with fluffy wood shavings inside and a little ladder leading to each. * they free range every day for several hours (as soon as we get home from work we let them out until the sun goes down). * they eat Scratch & Peck brand feed & and are given healthy treats like tomatoes and fruit often. * plenty of clean water Lately, we have tried everything from waving our arms to throwing in a few treats to quiet them down, but the minute we leave they start up again. When they see us, or hear the door open, they yell. I recently draped the perch area with sheets to keep out sunlight until a later morning hour, but it only kept them quiet a half hour longer than usual. So now, for the past several mornings I have had to resort to letting them to free range just to make them quiet. I do not want to keep this up as I know it is bound to create a bad habit, but I feel as if my hands are tied! There is nothing else that makes them stop. Does anyone else know what we can do? Thank you!!