Two of our chickens won't go in the coop

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by arrowti, Mar 12, 2017.

  1. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2014
    Our two buckeyes refuse to go in the coop at night. It's been in the negative teens at night with extra wind chill and they will do anything possible to avoid going inside. This is a new issue as they've never 'not 'wanted to go in and aren't getting picked on. Now I'm not so worried about them freezing to death since they're tough and intelligent and they go in the barn (where there's hay) but I'm more worried about them getting grabbed by a fox, since someone reported seeing one the other day.

    I managed to catch them with food today and shut the coop with them in it (they were hungry and thirsty but surprisingly, despite being 0 degrees and very windy, were not shivering or cold). The buckeyes are very tough and always hang out together but I don't want them out at night when there's a fox in the neighborhood.

    Any advice on changing this behavior? Just having them out at night increases the chance of a fox seeing them as an easy target and sticking around.
  2. eggbert420

    eggbert420 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2017
    Grab them at night when they are roosting and put them in the coop. After a few days they should start going on their own.
  3. BIggoMamma

    BIggoMamma Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 6, 2017
    Snatch them while they are asleep by the feet and legs and shut them up in the coop for a few days. After a chicken roosts 3 nights in the same place it thinks this is its bed. It has adopted a roost somewhere in the yard. Also get a really good flashlight if you do not have one already.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    More info on your flock and coop would help figure out what the problem it can be solved.
    Flock....numbers, ages, genders.
    Coop.....size in feet by would be most excellent.

    Moving them to the coop after dark might help....but please don't grab them by the feet and legs.
    Both hands holding wings down, then placing feet on roost works much better for all involved.
  5. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2014
    So far I couldn't find them at night. They were in all of yesterday but the chickens are out today.

    Right now we have 15 hens, 2 standard roosters and 1 bantam rooster - we cut our flock down during the winter from 30 hens because we had too many not laying eggs and wolfing food. We'll be adding more hens to prevent roosters fighting in spring. The buckeyes will be 2 years old this Spring.

    The coop is an old camper we converted. It was a long camper and has two separate 'rooms' with perches and nesting boxes, as well as a center area where food and water is. I don't have the exact dimensions as I'm not home at the moment, but it used to house 25 chickens at a time without any fighting. I will check if they go in tonight and if not try to find them and put them in.

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