Strange last couple of nights

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Babe77, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. Babe77

    Babe77 Songster

    Jun 11, 2009
    Williamsburg, MI
    Living in Michigan, we have had cold and blustery days. The 'kids' (6 mths old) did venture out a couple of times in the run after a few days cooped up inside. Yesterday though, a handful of them refused to go back into the coop at dark, even though for the past couple of months this was their norm to go in when the light came on inside. Again tonight, we had to go out and coax 1/2 of them back into the coop clearly under protest. Is this a normal thing? Are we missing something?

  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Sounds like they are frightened of something in their coop. I'd check all over and in every hiding place, just in case.
  3. Babe77

    Babe77 Songster

    Jun 11, 2009
    Williamsburg, MI
    DH and I did check and could find nothing. Funny thing is that it is only maybe 8-10 out of the 19 that did not want to come in. The EE's (who are clearly on the lower end of the pecking order) were up on the top roosts where they normally start out before any of the other birds normally would come inside. Our only roo "Hef" usually is on the top roost and upon just checking on them, is on the lower roost with the girls he usually is on the top with and the EE's are still in the same spot.
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    It's a mystery for sure! Sorry, I can't think of anything except fear of something that would make them do that, but hey, who knows what's in a chicken's mind?
  5. Sequin

    Sequin Songster

    May 20, 2008
    My guess is that something frightened them, and the roo is picking out the best(aka safest and warmest) spot for himself and his favored ladies. Maybe during the night something landed on the roof of the coop and gave them all a scare. Hence, the idea that a lower roost is better now. But this is purely speculative on my part. I am just trying to reason as a alpha chicken might.
  6. LeghornLisa

    LeghornLisa Songster

    Apr 9, 2009
    The only time my girls refused to go in the coop was when something startled them. They were very loud about it, so loud, it caused me to go out and see what was wrong. After I inspected and found nothing I stood inside the coop and called them in, they slowly felt safe and came inside. Not sure what it was about and hasn't happend again. If you listen to them they are trying to tell you something.
  7. Mine did that, and it turned out that when I made them go in, I was condemning them to a severe weaseling. I felt terrible. Please find them alternate safe housing and set a trap in the coop!

  8. Scoop

    Scoop Songster

    Jan 16, 2009
    Central PA
    Whoa! So weird! I had to coax half mine in last night, too! I looked in the coop and didn't see anything. I think maybe they were afraid I was going to hurt them because earlier in the day I think I hurt my rooster when he attacked me. After I hurt him most of the hens stood by him, maybe to comfort him.
  9. mstricer

    mstricer Crowing

    Feb 12, 2009
    Sounds like you have a bully. A few days ago when we had a bad cold windy day. I came home from work to find 12 of our younger pullets outside the coop crying and one big fat mean Black Giant Jersey bully guarding the entrance. I opened the big door made her move and everyone came in straving and thristy. I think shes was doing it all day. (Shes not every nice Top of Pecking order next to Mr. T)
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2009
  10. emys

    emys Songster

    Nov 19, 2008
    I agree something was on your roof, or climbing along roof rafters perhaps (mice inside?). The chickens experienced something which makes them think lower is better.

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