Teenagers refusing to roost

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by WyoChickies, Jun 21, 2016.

  1. WyoChickies

    WyoChickies Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 6, 2016
    Cheyenne, WY
    Hello all!
    I've got 5 pullets and a cockerel who are refusing to use their roosting bars. They tend to pile up in the far corner of the coop at night instead of roosting. I have their nesting boxes blocked off for now so they won't get in the habit of using them, but they are getting closer to the age they might start laying, and I obviously will have to open the boxes soon. They are about 15 weeks old at this point. Any tips? They are sleeping in the far corner of the coop where it is really difficult to climb in and grab them without major disruption.
     
  2. ChickenLover200

    ChickenLover200 Overrun With Chickens

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    I'll be in the barn!
    perhaps they just aren't ready to roost to sleep?
    When my chicks are smallr, I always put a stick roost a fewinches off the brooder floor. I find that it prepares them and helps them learn how to balance their weight well on a roost. They roost so,metimes during the day, but they just aren't ready to sleep on the roost (they are only 2 1/2 weeks old at this point)
     
  3. chickens really

    chickens really Chicken Obsessed

    I have never done this but know of other people that have. Go into the coop as it starts to get dark and place each bird on the roost. They will sleep there all night on the roost.
    Mine figure it out on their own.
     
  4. WyoChickies

    WyoChickies Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 6, 2016
    Cheyenne, WY
    It's one of those coops where it's off the ground, and pretty hard to actually get into without really disturbing the birds. They huddle in the far corner and I can't just pick them up from outside the coop. I caught a couple the other night who were huddled close to the door and they were not happy and jumped right back off. I did have small roosts in the brooder, but they'd only use it every once in a while, and now are completely ignoring the roosting bars.
     
  5. chickens really

    chickens really Chicken Obsessed

    Your roosting bars might be too thin? I use 2x4s flat side up.
     
  6. WyoChickies

    WyoChickies Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 6, 2016
    Cheyenne, WY
    No- our roosting bars are 2"x2"s. I'm not sure what their deal is. I'm also worried, as my Barred Rock is now squatting and her comb and wattles are getting red- so I need to open the nesting boxes soon. But obviously don't want the dang babies in there to sleep.
     
  7. chickens really

    chickens really Chicken Obsessed

    They will roost..Open up the nest boxes in the morning and close them in evening so the wont sleep in them.
     
  8. ShanandGem

    ShanandGem Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 16, 2016
    My Lavender Cuckoo Orpingtons are almost at point of lay and they do not roost. In fact, they refuse to climb ladders or stairs or do anything but sleep on the ground. I had to take the legs off their big communal nesting box and set it on the ground before they would get into it. There are roosting bars above it and they have never used them. They have started using a small roosting bar in the their run but only to get close to me and talk to me when I am looking over the edge of their fence.
     
  9. WyoChickies

    WyoChickies Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 6, 2016
    Cheyenne, WY
    Well- 4/5 of my ladies are now laying. We put off opening the nesting boxes a little too late and our first lady didn't figure it out in time- and ended up laying in the bedding. I gave up and just hoped that they wouldn't think the nesting boxes were a good place to sleep. They did end up sleeping in the corner for about another month. In the last week or so, they have all been on the roosts when I go lock the coop up for the night. No one ever took to sleeping in the nest boxes. So! Success!
     
  10. GC-Raptor

    GC-Raptor Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yeah I did the same thing, I put off putting the nest boxes in the coop. And one day I saw two girls moving the straw to one corner, so I finished the boxes that evening and put them in the coop.
    The next day I heard the egg song so I went to check and found no egg. But the hen was going in and out of the coop. So I opened the access door and tried to lure her in, no luck. So I call her to me and I put her in through the access door and closed it. A half hour later I had my first egg.
    The next hen to lay put it on the floor. And the next day two were on the floor. But ever since I have found two eggs a day in the nest box, YES. Morale of the story, don't go past 16 weeks before opening, putting in the nest boxes, they need time to investigate. And put some fake eggs or golf balls I hear work too. GC[​IMG]
     
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