When is "Bedtime?"

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by laurabonitahopkins, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. laurabonitahopkins

    laurabonitahopkins Chirping

    May 28, 2011
    Littleton, CO
    Hi, I've got my first batch of chicks - they are 5 weeks old, and out in the coop the last few nights now. I feel stupid asking this, but what time should I expect they will want to "go to bed?" They aren't heading in on their own yet, so I'm not sure what time I ought to be putting them in so they get the hang of it. I'm going out of town on Friday for a few days, and I have no idea what to tell my "chick sitter" to expect, since we haven't gotten any sort of routine down yet! Thanks!
  2. hannakat

    hannakat Songster

    Jun 5, 2010
    Beaver County, PA
    Mine usually head in early..... at the moment it's around 7:30. They like to be settled and comfy before it actually gets dark.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  3. BeckyandHerBrood

    BeckyandHerBrood In the Brooder

    Jun 20, 2011
    Champaign, IL
    It took mine a few weeks to figure out how to go to the coop at night on their own. They finally got it and seem to settle in right about sunset every night. Hope that helps.
  4. earnhardtlvr

    earnhardtlvr Songster

    Mar 25, 2011
    Hagerstown, MD
    I live in Western MD and it gets dark here around 9pm. The girls will start putting themselves to bed around 8:20 and all of them r normally settled by 8:40ish. I would recommend putting them on a schedule and about 30 mins b4 it gets dark where u live, coax them into the coop and have them all inside about 15-20 mins b4 it geets dark. We only had to do this 3 nights b4 they started doing it on their own! I have 28 chickies too! We have done this since Memorial day weekend and it has been wonderful. Last week we started a new bedtime routine and it only took 3 days for them to get that down to. Now at 8:10 or so we go out, let the run door open...all 28 chickens come out running, and graze around in the yard for 20 mins or so and we open the coop door now and once they r done pecking around they just go in the coop and getting on their roosts and settle down for the night. Still about 8:40 to 8:50 and they r in bed. That schedule will change as daylight time changes. I have been absolutely AMAZED at how easy getting them to bed has been. So u be the boss and set up a schedule close to dusk and put them to bed. In a few days they will do it themselves. Good luck and have a good trip!!!

    Pics of ur babies will help. NNot getting them in the coop, but us BYC users of getting our pic fix of chicks! [​IMG]
  5. Sinfonian

    Sinfonian Songster

    Jan 24, 2011
    Seattle area
    I've been putting my 2 month olds to bed around dusk. I know they'd be in bed on their own by then as they crowd the entrance to their arc by then. I'd say a half hour before dusk is the right time. I should move them in sooner, but they go in SO easy at dusk. They really want in. Tough call. Good luck.
  6. classicsredone

    classicsredone Songster

    Jan 6, 2011
    Sacramento County, CA
    Mine are usually inside about 30-40 minutes before the sun is down. I started training them to go up in the coop when they were mostly feathered. I used dried meal worms as a treat, and they had it down within a few days. I kept two lights on in the ark's run (it was in the garage for a long time due to heavy winter rains), and turned the garage light and 1 ark light off to simulate dusk. It ended up working pretty well as a signal for them to go to bed.
  7. BeetleChick

    BeetleChick In the Brooder

    May 19, 2011
    East of Raleigh, NC
    We trained ours to come in when we turned the light on in their coop. They were only 4 weeks old when they moved into the coop in mid-may in nc, so they needed the light for warmth, now it is the signal for night time snack and bed.
  8. wowmanacat

    wowmanacat Songster

    Apr 1, 2011
    Oak Grove AR
    Mine go in at dusk or a bit before. I also call them back to there run with some treats.
  9. shadust1

    shadust1 Songster

    Apr 19, 2011
    loretto, pa
    Quote:did u shut them in the coop for a couple days??? it seems to show them where home is....i did that and they go into bed everynight around 8pm or a little after...never have had a problem with that...
  10. chefchick

    chefchick Songster

    Jun 2, 2011
    That's what I did, too when they were moved outside. Now, they head in by themselves like everyone else has said...about a half hour before dark. Good luck

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