Sleeping on the roof?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by bobdlee, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. bobdlee

    bobdlee New Egg

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    Jul 9, 2008
    Hi everybody,

    I don't know how long this has been going on, but last night was the first time I've noticed it:

    I have a nice-sized chicken corral with two partitions. One is for my adult Rhode Island Red, and one is for 7 RIR pullets and one auracana (sp?) pullet (who may be a rooster, we're still not sure). I have them separated until the little ones are big enough to hold their own against the adult. There is a chicken tractor in each partition.

    Last night, I noticed that the auracana wouldn't go in the tractor, but insisted on sleeping on the roof of it. She was up there probably 15 minutes before the others started turning in. During that time, the other RIRs would jump up on top with her, only to be nipped on their necks by the auracana. They eventually went inside the tractor.

    Meanwhile, the adult chicken insisted on sleeping on top of her house, too! They stayed there all night, I assume.

    Any ideas? The adult chicken has taken what seems to be a parental posture-- I think she may have slept on her house to keep an eye on the baby. She may also be trying to hold onto her position in the pecking order (Anything you can do, I can do better).
     
  2. ibpboo

    ibpboo Where Chickens Ride Horses

    Jul 9, 2007
    always changing
    [​IMG]

    My chickens prefer to sleep on top of things. I think it is instinct to help protect themselves from predators. In the coop they have shelves up high they sleep on, and the ones that sleep in the tack room find stuff to jump up on!
    [​IMG]
     
  3. arlee453

    arlee453 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    My suggestion is to keep putting the roof-sleeping chicken in the coop. That's how I trained mine to go IN the coop rather than ON the coop.

    At dusk - before it gets totally dark, but after the chicken gets up on the roof, go ahead and get the chicken and put them in the coop on the roost.

    If you time it right, it will be too dark ouside for the chicken to want to go back out, but not so dark that they can't see that they are IN the coop.

    It has taken me anywhere from one time to a week/10 days to train mine where to sleep using this method.

    A quicker way is to keep that chicken locked IN the coop for 2-3 days. That may not be possible/practical depending on your situation, though.

    If the run is very secure, it might not be a big deal if the chicken just roost on the top all the time, but if your run is not secure against night time preds, then I highly urge you to train this chicken to sleep INSIDE.

    It is very easy for a nocturnal predator like a racoon or possom or fox to grab a sleeping chicken since they can't see the pred coming in the dark.
     
  4. chicksinthemachine

    chicksinthemachine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 8, 2008
    Henley,MO
    As you can see on my avatar my oldest hen sleeps in a tree limb above my bull mastiffs dog house which is no where near the coop, I just let her be and so far so good.
     
  5. chicksinthemachine

    chicksinthemachine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 8, 2008
    Henley,MO
    Also I have a ? about hawks whendo they attack because I am missing 3 of my chicks this morning at some point I don't know if they strayed away from the flock and are out and about or if something got them.
     
  6. ibpboo

    ibpboo Where Chickens Ride Horses

    Jul 9, 2007
    always changing
    Hawks will attack any time of the day. They just swoop down and carry off their prey. Usually they have to be pretty big to get a full size grown hen. I was lucky when one swooped after my BR hen, she was close to a tree she squawked and my son ran out there and the hawk flew away, but there were feathers everywhere. I have lots of things my hens can go under and they kind of know to hide when hawks are around.
     
  7. chicksinthemachine

    chicksinthemachine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    139
    Jul 8, 2008
    Henley,MO
    Thanks I am really just hoping they are out running around, we live in the country so there is plenty of land and stuff to hide in and around also.
     
  8. ibpboo

    ibpboo Where Chickens Ride Horses

    Jul 9, 2007
    always changing
    Maybe taking a nap somewhere, mine do that!
     

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