Weird chicken behavior at dusk

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickenmomva, Mar 15, 2007.

  1. chickenmomva

    chickenmomva In the Brooder

    Mar 15, 2007
    Northern Neck,VA
    I have had trouble with my chickens going in at night they have been in their coop and pen for 3 days and they are 8 weeks old and they do wonderful during the day they love it sunset the freak out they huddle up on the side of the coop in the pen as if they can not find the door so we go out there and get in the pen and put in the coop one at a time and then the are in the coop carrying on all huddle up on the door trying to get in the light from outside on the floor or on the door or walls......dont they know it is time for bed???? do we need to put a light in the coop???? i feel like a bad chicken mom!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  2. Barnyard Dawg

    Barnyard Dawg Songster

    Feb 7, 2007
    Northern California
    Maybe cut up some fresh vegetables and lead them into the pen or maybe a small amount of scratch. My chickens enter through the pen I leave my coop open 24 hours a day they go to the perches in the pen and sit before going to bed.
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2007
  3. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing

    Oooo! Great idea. Putting scratch in their coop will make them scratch and turn their bedding for you!
  4. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    I always lock mine in the coop for a few days with food and water. Then I'll leave the door open and put the water outside but leave the food inside. Of course I keep an eye on them throughout the day to be sure they are going in to eat. Then when night comes if they don't go in on their own I put them in. Usually only a day or two of having to go in on their own to find food and then waking up in the morning in the coop and they get the idea.
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2007
  5. ella

    ella Songster

    Yes, a light could really help you. If it's dark outside and light inside I've noticed they will gravitate toward the light.

    When I moved the girls from the old coop to the new coop I led them to the door with a flashlight. They would follow the beam of light right up to the door! I only had to do that the first night, by the second night they went in on their own, but then, I always suspected that my chicken were smarter than average![​IMG]
  6. chickenmomva

    chickenmomva In the Brooder

    Mar 15, 2007
    Northern Neck,VA
    Thanks for the advice guys!!!!! We will try them all and see how things go it is raining and very bad weather and we have them in the coop today we will see how they do at going to bed tommorrow........they really do seem to be afraid of the dark almost it was really weird![​IMG]
  7. cgjsmith

    cgjsmith Songster

    Mar 6, 2007
    8 weeks old could attribute to that. could it be that they are still young enough to be afraid of the dark? My 7 weekers still have to have a light a night. C
  8. Kitsune

    Kitsune Songster

    Feb 2, 2007
    Manchester - England
    Chicks being afraid of the dark comes from them being artificially incubated, if you think about it they have always had a light, even at night.. the best way to prevent this before the chicks go outside is to start turning off the brooder light at dusk for a few days before putting them outside, get them used to the dark.
  9. informative

    informative Songster

    Jun 16, 2013
    Yes putting tiny LED low power holiday lights in the coop made them run up there every night at dusk with no coaxing. They are afraid of the dark.
  10. Chickmagnet36

    Chickmagnet36 In the Brooder

    Nov 14, 2012
    Southern Massachusetts
    They are still young, mine did the same thing at that age, but they got used to the day / night routine after a few days. I found that adding a light just prolongs the process, but do whatever works best for your situation.

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