What's is right for my girls.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Burdenedthunder, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. Burdenedthunder

    Burdenedthunder In the Brooder

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    Hello everyone,

    I have 8 chickens, four of which have been laying since September (the other four are still too young). My birds are free range and have taken to nest in the oddest places, but yesterday was the last straw. They went over to the neighbors and laid their eggs where I can't get them. After talking with an old farmer who suggested that I put my birds in the coup and leave them there for a week, then start letting them out during the day. My coup is small; only four foot by six foot and 5 foot high. Is this enough room for 8 birds? I have roosting poles 2-inch diameter crisscrossed everywhere and seven nesting boxes. I installed a daylight LED for light and of course, food and water.

    My problem is---I feel uncomfortable them being in the coup for that long. I just don't feel that is right not to frolic in the yard and get fresh air. is this ok? or should I do something else.
     
    rjohns39 and HuffleClaw like this.
  2. DobieLover

    DobieLover Free Ranging

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    My Coop
    I would make a temporary pen around the coop that they can stay in during their confinement.
    What do your nest boxes look like (pictures)? You need to make them very inviting so they will want to lay their eggs in there.
     
    rjohns39, HuffleClaw, aart and 6 others like this.
  3. mountainbunny

    mountainbunny Songster

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    I'm sure someone on here can give you exact dimensions on how much space is required for each bird as far as coop size goes... I can tell you that your coop is too small. I had the same problem with coop size being too small but managed it ok. Sorry couldn't be more help. Like said, I'm sure someone will post the dimensions needed to keep them comfortable when in the coop. I recently rehomed my girls, but I love this forum, so I still hang around. Good luck with your chickens! :)
     
  4. andreanar

    andreanar Crowing

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    Yes, keep them confined for a week or so. Put a dummy egg-eggs in the nest boxes. You can rig up a temp run around the coop with some snow fence or cheap netting so they can have some more room. It may be a pain in the butt for awhile, but youll be happy in the long run when you don't have to hunt for eggs.
     
  5. Burdenedthunder

    Burdenedthunder In the Brooder

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    I found a tape measure--my guestimation was horrible.
    Coup dimensions. 6 feet high- 12 feet long and 6 feet wide.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
  6. animalyodelers

    animalyodelers Songster

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    That's definitely a better size. Minimum is typically 4 sq feet per bird in the coop. I agree with the others that suggest a small temporary run around the coop while you get them used to it.

    I kept my chicks locked in the coop for most of one day, and then kept their food and water in their for about a week (and fed treats in there) and mine figured out that it's home. Might be worth feeding them treats in the coop for awhile afterward too, then they'll have another reason to keep going back there.
     
  7. townchicks

    townchicks Crowing

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    Sounds like enough room, or, you could just lock the 4 layers in the coop and let the other four out, or lock them all up for 1/2 the day (or until everyone has laid) and then let them all out. Definitely, put some sort of fake egg or golf balls in the nests.
     
  8. Burdenedthunder

    Burdenedthunder In the Brooder

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    Northeast Washington state
    Ok here is my coup and my girls. This is a temporary coup and will build a suite for my girls, once the deal closes on our property.
     

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  9. townchicks

    townchicks Crowing

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    It seems dark, did you say there was a light in the coop? Do you leave it on during the day? Or could you add some windows? That may be part of why they don't want to lay there.
     
  10. andreanar

    andreanar Crowing

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    Looks like OP can just cut a window in the coop, and cover with hardware cloth and then some clear plastic to keep wind and rain out.
     
    rjohns39, townchicks and DobieLover like this.

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