What Are My Chickens Doing

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jalmjn, Apr 1, 2011.

  1. jalmjn

    jalmjn New Egg

    Apr 1, 2011
    We have never had or raised chickens before but decided to try our hand at it after we moved out to the country last fall. About 6 weeks ago, my husband came home from the feed store with 4 small baby chicks (just a few days old). We have kept them in a brooding house since they were so small and we sometimes have hot/cold spikes in the weather this time of year. On pretty days we have let them out into the fenced in chicken yard to enjoy the sun and to scratch in the dirt and look for bugs. Since it's been getting prettier a lot more they have been going out a lot. This morning my children and I put them outside and decided to stand and watch them and their funny behaviors for a few minutes. We noticed them doing this wierd funny laying down thing. They would lay down on their sides for a few seconds and stretch out the wing that was on top of their body. It looked like they were basking in the sunshine or something?!?! They all 4 did this each a few times. They would lay down for a few seconds then get up and resume their normal walking around and scratching in the dirt/picking at bits of grass and then lay down again and "bask in the sun/stretch" again. Since we are new at this I thought I would ask if someone who has been around chickens a lot more than us could possibly tell us what in the world they were doing.
  2. silkieroo

    silkieroo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2010
    Durham NH
    They are sunbathing of course! Wait til they start to dirtbathe! Hehehe! You're in for a treat! [​IMG]
  3. bethandjoeync

    bethandjoeync Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 21, 2009
    Iron Station, NC
    chicks and chickens love sunbathing! it warms them up and relaxes them too! congrats!
  4. ginormous chicken

    ginormous chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2011
    Elverta, California
    Basking... Also, chickens tend to dig in the dirt to clean themselves. My do that right before they start digging, "chicken craters" to clean themselves. The wing thing, doesn't amek it sound like they are squatting. So yeah... that is what I would go with. Laying around and getting ready to dig holes.
  5. eastercreek

    eastercreek Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2011
    Benton, LA
    It scared me the first time I saw my chicks doing this...then I realized it was always in the direct path of a sunbeam. They found the warm shavings in the bottom of the coop...and then spread out their wings and legs to catch the warmth of that sunbeam. it looked like they were in pain at first...but now I think it is hilarious since I know what they are doing!
  6. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    First time I saw an adult dirt bathing I thought she had broken bones....
  7. Mattemma

    Mattemma Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 12, 2009
    My hens do it too. Very funny when they are all basking or tossing dirt around while dusting bathing.

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