Strange new roosting habits

Advertisement Purina Flock Layer


7 Years
Jun 12, 2012
Amsterdam, MO
I have 5 RIR hens, and 1 RIR rooster, about 18 months old. I also have 6 month old hens, combos of black sexlinks; gold comets, barred rocks, and Easter eggers, along with 2 Easter egger roosters. We have a shed that the RIRs sleep in, and the 6 month olds all sleep in a roofed outdoor pen. Usually everyone settles in before dark, and I can close the pen door. Saturday evening when I came home, most of the girls and the boys were still out. They were wanting to roost on some piles of sticks in various places around the yard. I got most of them in, picking some of them up and carrying them into the pen. I didn't realize I missed a few, until we let the dogs out, and one of them got too close to where they were roosting. On the shelf connected to the BBQ grill. Got them in, finally, about 10 p.m.

Sunday AM I let them out of the pen, and realized we were missing a black sex link. I found a big clump of feathers by the back fence, that goes into the soybean field behind us. So, I don't know if this happened before I got them all in, or after I went to bed, if I missed one. Last night I went out earlier, and thought they had all gone into the pen... but no... 3 of them on the BBQ grill again. And they were very, very flighty. It took about 30 minutes to get the last two in. Actually, one was a golden comet, and she opted to go to shed with the RIRs.

Anyone have any ideas as to why they are doing this? I'm in Missouri, south of KC, and the weather was hot, Saturday was our first 'cool' day for quite a while. Any recommendations for getting them in easier? I want them all to start going into the shed with the RIRs, but when I tried closing the door to the pen, they freaked out and tried roosting all over the place, including low hanging branches. I'm hoping cooler weather will encourage them to get into the shed, because it has electricity and we use heat lamps.
It sounds like what ever got the one got it inside of where you are trying to close them in at. They are scared, make sure it is secure at night from anything. They will feel safer after a while, but the ones that refuse to go in may have seen the attack.

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