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Chickens that refuse to go to bed!

 
pollinator
Posts: 793
Location: North Carolina zone 7
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Hello friends. My chickens are three months old. Every night the entire flock beds down outside their protective chicken run. Inside the run are two nice coops, and plenty of roost outside the coop. But every night the form a tight circle on the ground just outside the door of the run. Anyone have ideas how to get them to go in like every other chicken?
 
pollinator
Posts: 452
Location: Upstate SC
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Scatter some feed inside the run or coop in the evening at the time when they should be getting ready to roost, then close the door/gate once all of the chickens have gone in to eat. They should eventually develop a roosting instinct as they get older.
 
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They'll do it on there own eventually, chicks are afraid of anything they haven't experienced before, also there's always a argument over who's going to sleep where on the roost, if there are grown or even older chicks already using the roost they're not going to try to go up, they know they're going to get a whoopin' and driven off anyway. If you want them to start going up just go out before you go to bed and put them on the roost or start them on a limb laid across two boxes just above where they roost now, after a couple of days they'll go on their own.
 
Scott Stiller
pollinator
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Thanks Mike. That worked for about a week. Now they know what's going on. They are so dumb most of the time I thought it would work forever.
I haven't tried placing them on a roost but I'll give it a go. The problem is there are 22 chicks that really freak out every night when I go out there to put them up. Last night I picked each one up and put it in the run, all to a symphony of ticked off hens.
 
Posts: 43
Location: NH
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For new chickens I go out after dark during the night checks and put all the ones not in the roosting area into the roost space. They will learn to do it after a few days
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