Switching coops and nesting area

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by pdholbrook, Jan 2, 2016.

  1. pdholbrook

    pdholbrook Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 1, 2014
    Lexington, KY
    My husband and I have built a new large coop for my ladies and we are keeping the smaller coop they're leaving for some chicks that are also in the run now. I still have to protect the chicks from the grown chickens when I'm not out keeping an eye out, so to go ahead and put the new chicks in the old coop and push the grown chickens to use the new coop, I would have to block everyone in their proper places.

    So my question, is it a good idea to suddenly block the chickens off from the coop and nesting box they've been using? The new coop is ready and I plan to put a couple of wooden eggs in the nesting boxes in the new coop.

    Any tips and suggestions would be excellent!

    The grown chickens are all buff orpingtons and there are 4 of them. The chicks are 6 weeks old and have been walking in and out of the old coop already, so I'm sure they'll like it quite a bit.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Percheron chick

    Percheron chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Boulder, Colorado
    They'll be fine. Don't give them anyplace to lay but the new boxes even if that means leaving them in the coop until they lay.
     
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    You might have to confine the older birds for a while to get them used to the new coop, I did this a couple of years ago, mine were also buff Orpington, they eventually stopped trying to get back into their old pen but they would still occasionally go over there to lay their eggs, they did stop after a year or two, chickens don't like change.
     
  4. pdholbrook

    pdholbrook Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 1, 2014
    Lexington, KY
    This is good to hear actually. I was worried I would have to leave them with access to the old coop for the transition. This will be easier, even though they'll get pissy with me I'm sure. Haha
     
  5. DanEP

    DanEP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2010
    Cadiz Ky
    When moving chickens like that I always lock them down in the new coop for a few days till they get the idea that this is home now. If you give them access to the old coop they may never change over to the new one. I've never had any luck just letting them move on their own since they really don't like change. I wait till dark so I can just pick them up off the roost with no chasing or herding involved and move them to the new coop and place them on the new roost so that's where they wake up. After a few days they will think of the new coop as home and you can let them out.
     
  6. pdholbrook

    pdholbrook Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 1, 2014
    Lexington, KY
    So I went ahead and blocked off the old coop and put the newer chicks in it. They were still restless about an hour after they normally would be asleep, but I have faith in them. The older chickens are checking out the new coop, but all sleeping right in the doorway right now. I'm just glad they're at least near it, but it is 35 degrees outside right now, so I wish they'd snuggle into the warmth. One of the chickens was in the nesting box when I closed everything off, so I picked her up and placed her in the new nesting box. This upset her and she spent about an hour and a half trying to get back into the other nesting box, but she gave up and actually did lay her egg in the new nesting box!

    I'm going to check on them again in about an hour and see if they've finally all fallen asleep.

    We're going to do the door tomorrow, so I'll be able to close them in the coop instead of just the run.
     

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