Training your chickens to move to the coop at night

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by MalkoskiFarm, Apr 6, 2012.

  1. MalkoskiFarm

    MalkoskiFarm New Egg

    Apr 6, 2012
    Hi, we are first time backyard chicken farmers with 4 6.5 week old chickens. For the last week they have been outside full time, in their chicken run during the day and then moved to their secure nighttime enclosure coop at night. The problem is they won't go into their coop on their own. When it gets dark they just huddle around the door to the run instead of going up the ramp to the coop. I have to go out and pick them up and put them in so I can close the door. I know they can go up and down the ramp and in and out of the coop in the day, but they don't seem interested in doing that at night. Am I just being impatient, or are their tricks to training your chicks? Thanks!
  2. spartacus_63

    spartacus_63 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 21, 2009
    Central Iowa
    Is it darker in the coop then outside?
  3. broodysilkies!?!

    broodysilkies!?! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 14, 2011
    North Florida
    I have a ramp to get to my coop too! I had to go out there every night for about 4-5 weeks and manually push my chickens up the ramp and after about 4 or 5 weeks I went out there and BOOM they had gone up there by themselves!

    I guess they got tired of my constantly puchin them in the butts every night lol. :) But as long as it works i dont care!

    Wishing you the best of luck!
  4. randishinney

    randishinney Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 5, 2012
    Mine did this too. O just kept moving them by hand up the ramp and onto the coop everyday. Eventually they started doing it themselves.

    Sent from my LS670 using Tapatalk
  5. Chicken_Pauper

    Chicken_Pauper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 8, 2011
    Southern California
    Remember that chickens cannot see in the dark, not at all. They need a "night light" to get into the coop and settled.. then, later, after they are settled "tucked in", you can unplug or turn off the light. Or, a timer will work. Set it up to come on at dusk and go off at 9 PM or so... you will have to adjust as the daylight length changes.
    You can also try keeping them inside the coop, and not let them out into the run for a couple of days... two or three days.

    They are young and will eventually get it. Do they have a ramp up to the roost as well (inside the coop)?

    Best of luck.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2012
  6. MalkoskiFarm

    MalkoskiFarm New Egg

    Apr 6, 2012
    Wow, thank you all for responding so quickly. This is my first post on BYC and the response has exceeded my expectations. I have started putting a nightlight in the coop and I guess I expected it to start working right away. I will just be patient with my chick training. Thanks again!
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri


    Last edited: Apr 8, 2012
  8. jeepguy982001

    jeepguy982001 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 4, 2011
    athens, wv
    just keep at it they'll figure it out sooner or later.
  9. Knittycat

    Knittycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2011
    Bay City, TX
    Or they won't. Mine are a year old and still don't go into the coop to sleep at night. Instead they chick-pile into the corner of the run. Oh well, at least it's secure.
  10. oreochip

    oreochip Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 25, 2010
    Fort Worth
    Cheese. They love cheese. Our birds free range all day. A little shredded cheese in the coop is their "bedtime snack". We walk to the coop with the bag of cheese and in they come :)

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