Why don't my chicks sleep?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Lisa Wood, Jul 3, 2016.

  1. Lisa Wood

    Lisa Wood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, they are seven weeks, nine females, one accidental male. The coop is 6.5 x 6 feet. It was what was suggested, but I do not know how they will fit full grown. I think just a couple roost at night. The run right now us about 10 x 50, but will soon be expanded to 10 x 70.
    There is a hardware cloth screened window that they love at night. I have two fans in coop, one large fan aiming thru little window on chicks. I also have a floor light illuminating thru window so there is dim light to back of coop so it does not look so scary. If light is not on, they refuse to enter coop at dusk. I can see from my windows this small window in the coop, and it looks like a chick rotation has been set up so they all gey a shot. They LOVE the window.
    During the night, there are periods where it looks like they are having a chick party. I can see them moving, see their feathers flutter in the fan, and see huge chick shadows behind them. Other times it looks like they are resting quietly, but awake, with little movement.
    It is almost 3;30 am, and they appear asleep, no movement. I think they take cat naps, (chick naps) that last about 30 minutes, then they wake and party, go thru the whole cycle again. They may close their eyes in day, but unless it is group nap. It is just for a minute or two.
    I am a night owl. Are they just night chicks? I envisioned them staying still and sleeping soundly all night?

    Lisa
     
  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Maybe if you turn off the light, once you have closed the coop, they will settle down and sleep.

    Ct
     
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    I bet they are staying up reading chicken comic books - hard habbit to break.
     
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  4. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

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    I agree... once in you can turn off the light and should help them settle better...

    But as for sleeping through the night solidly, they don't... not like us... first, they're a prey animal and nighttime is their vulnerable time... being light sleepers is hardwired in them... also, I expect sleeping on a shared roost could be compared to sharing a wide bed with your whole family... so-and-so snores, so-and-so hogs the covers, and so-and-so kicks in his sleep... and so on...
     
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  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I am not certain of your lighting description although lighting can impact their activity after the sun goes down. Especially if there is a disturbance they are not acclimated to. Otherwise most will spend the bulk of the night sleeping.

    In the past when I had birds roosting on the front porch under light they would still go to sleep with heads tucked under wing. You had to be quite to sneak up on the them as opening door would wake them up. Pulling into driveway with car / truck would not wake them up, Birds I have penned in field are checked every night with a flashlight do not rouse when I shine the spotlight on them as they are used to such disturbance.

    Consider having a nightlight (low lumens) in the coop that illuminates area birds roost in only after reflecting off wall or ceiling. Even have it on a timer like used in house so light goes off about 30 minutes after dark. For me getting birds to sleep soundly in safe locations is a priority as birds not doing so are a greater risk to depredation and make surveillance for their safety more difficult.



    Blood sucking parasites can interfere with sleeping patterns. Mosquitoes certainly can as can apparently lice and mites.
     
  6. Lisa Wood

    Lisa Wood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok. I went out to let chickens out about an hour early since I could not sleep. They were all asleep. I forgot to mention they mostly are not perching. Generally they pile on each other like puppies.

    So here's another question. Do they have night vision like a cat? If I get nightlight and turn it off, how will they see if they move around? Is it like part of the plan to have them so they can't see, so they are afraid to move around, so they stay put? It just seems like they would need a little light very dim, in case they walk on another chick? I know these questions sound stupid. Thanks so much for helping. All this info is stuff not found in a book.
    No blood suckers. I check dailey and see no itching and have DE down.

    Lisa
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Roosting up on a perch is expedited by friendly adult, usually their mother. Typically my chickens with mother roost up by 4 weeks although brooder reared can 12 weeks old before they do. Piling is not a problem in a secure coop unless you have too many (>30) and it gets cold.

    Night vision is less than ours. They are well suited for flying up onto roost site in tree under natural lighting conditions although coops and hen houses can get dark more abruptly causing birds to be stranded on ground.
     
  8. Lisa Wood

    Lisa Wood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok thanks so much. I feel better with a plan and knowing they are sleeping at least some. I turned the light they have now down towards the ground a little. When husband gets home we can address light with timer.

    Thats exactly what I was trying to ask, that I dont want them stranded on floor.

    Lisa
     
  9. the poppster

    the poppster Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a very low wattage red light in my coop at night. The Birds settle down with no problem. But if something happens to get into the coop....believe me! They can see it! And will make a fuss. Knock on wood, but two years....and the only birds I lost to predators were some chicks to a weasel and a pullet who decided to take up roosting on top of a feeder out in the run, another weasel. Trapped both weasels and chased any low roosting birds into the coop, or to a higher roost.....so far so good. Hopefully I haven't jinks my self!
     
  10. Lisa Wood

    Lisa Wood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Did weasel get into coop? I don't even really know whar a weasel is... ......supposedy the coop is secure. Except for snakes, how can you take ccare of that, right? I do have snake trap but have'nt seen a smake yet. I will check on red bulb.
     

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