When to move to coop?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by maxairedale, Mar 24, 2013.

  1. maxairedale

    maxairedale New Egg

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    Mar 21, 2013
    South Central Kentucky
    As I said before I'm new to chickens.

    My babies (White Leghorns) are now about 5 weeks old; they appear to have all or most of their feathers.

    A few questions
    1. At what point can/should I put them in the coop outside? Here it is late March and winter is still attacking South Central KY.
    2. When moving them to the coop, when should I introduce them to the nesting boxes (I know they are not ready for laying)? They are going to be the only birds in the coop and the nesting boxes are built as part of the coop.
      1. Should I prevent them from going into the nesting boxes at first so the get the idea of sleeping on the roost located higher then the nesting box area? In the current container they have a roost and they use it.
    3. Should I feed (drop into their area) them some earthworms (fishing worms) so they get better at looking for food away from the feeder?

    Thanks,
    Gary
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I would probably put them in the coop now, at least during the day. Be sure they have enough hay or other litter to snuggle down into. You should be able to tell by how they act whether they are warm enough. They may not sleep on the new roost until they are a little older -- or they might. They may want to snuggle together in the hay to sleep at first. I would just let them choose. Yes, I would block off the nests until they are near point of lay.
     
  3. McGobs

    McGobs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2012
    x2 - I'd put them out, and keep an eye on them. Block off the nestboxes so they don't end up sleeping in those. That turns out to be a nasty mess all by itself.
     
  4. White Leghorn

    White Leghorn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 16, 2013
    North Carolina
    I would move the white leghorns (love the breed) into the coop now or even possibly wait it out one more week until they reach two months! I usually move them around 5-7 weeks and they do fine!

    I never block my nesting boxes off or do anything to prevent them from going in there. Mine, too, are built in as part of the coop and I just let them wonder in and out of there every now and then. I just make sure that at night they are sleeping somewhere besides the boxes.

    I usually go in at night and place my chicks on the roost when it is completely dark so they can't see to move. After about a week of this, they go into the coop and sleep on the roost themselves. Since they already have roosts, it shouldn't be a problem but sometimes it takes some time for the chickens to get used to something new.

    Chickens naturally scratch for worms and food. You can give them treats but it isn't necessary. They'll find them on their own. I like to give mine treats and throw their feed on the ground so they get some exercise scratching around at the ground!

    Hope this helps! Please PM me with any questions you have!
     
  5. maxairedale

    maxairedale New Egg

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    Mar 21, 2013
    South Central Kentucky
    Thanks for the replies.

    Snow on the ground this morning so the babies[​IMG] are staying inside for a few more days or weeks.

    Thanks again.

    regards,
    Gary
     

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