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TESSANN

New hen and Eglu door -advice please

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Hi there,

 

I have a new ex battery hen that I am integrating with my other two. They free range during the day with the odd peck, but not too bad.

 

I have had the new one for about four weeks now, she was, and still is in some way, oven ready, but her neck is now fully feathered and she is alot better than she was when I first got her.

 

I plan to put her in the Eglu tonight with the others, but was wondering if I should keep the Eglu door open so she can 'escape' from the others if necessary?

 

What do you think?

 

Tessann

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Personally I would Tessann, but leaving the door open at night has it's own risks too. Mine is open every night unless it's below freezing, but then I assessed the fox risk and decide that it was low and I was prepared to take the risk.

 

It's up to you.

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I was advised to close the door, as they will get used to each others smells while they are nice and snoozy. If the door is shut they are less likely to flap about. This apparently makes them easier to integrate. I've tried this recently and, 5 days on, things are going ok.

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I never hear any quarrels when the hens are locked inside the Eglu or Cube. It only seems to start when they come out.

 

But your chickens may be different: you know them, and you must judge.

 

If you are visited by the fox, then I wouldn't leave the door open. Early morning is a dangerous time.

 

Another question is whether food is available if they do emerge early. I can't leave pellets out overnight because I am plagued with rats: you may be the same, in which case if the hens come out and find no food, they may start fighting out of frustration and would be better off shut away.

 

It's difficult at this time of year, I know, as you have to get up so early to let them out: they need to be liberated by about 7am, or else they may start squabbling indoors out of frustration.

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I have read a lot of posts with people letting their girls out really early......Ours refuse to come out of the eglu til 9am, so we have decided now that there is no point in getting up so early......Maybe we have lazy hens lol :)

 

Sorry slightly off topic I know.....Anyone else like ours??

 

 

Karl

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My girls are always let out between 5am and 6.30am.

This morning however, I slept in untill 6.35 and they were not happy.

In fact it was the dog who woke me up barking because she could hear the girls!! :lol:

 

Most people say that you should let them out a certain time every day so that they get into a routine but being that I wake up anytime between 5.00 and 6.30 I just let them out as soon as I'm up because as soon as they hear me in the kitchen they start scuffling around and clucking. :roll:

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Thanks for the replies everyone.

 

Lin, glad to know five days on things are ok, although they sleep together at night, what do you do with them during the day?

 

Best wishes

 

Rosemary

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If I'm out, they stay in the eglu run. One new one is 99% integrated, so just mooches around with the older girls. The 4th one is having a slightly harder time and spends most of the time in the house part. She does come out for a drink or some food, but is generally chased back in. When I'm home we let them out in a make-shift pen which gives them a bit more space to breath. This allows everyone to potter around without much aggression. Doing this as regularly as I can seems to be helping relations and everyone is gradually getting ued to each other.

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Hi Lin

 

Thanks for the reply.

 

Flopsy seems to stay in the house when they are in the run together and then every so often there is an argument. It seems to be then that this is normal if you are having the same thing happen.

 

It is awful watching it all happen. Flopsy just runs out there way even when they are free ranging in the garden.

 

Best wishes, keep us informed how things go

 

Rosemary

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On the subject of the eglu door. Do people feel it is generally ok to leave it open in the summer then? (in a low fox environment)

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Hi,

 

I have left the Eglu door open on occasion, but we live in a bungalow so would hear if there were any foxes around. Last year we had a fox around and the ducks (two of them) were very, very noisy in the middle of the night so I knew something was wrong, pleased to say the fox scarperd and not seen it since.

 

Rosemary

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Our girls have their doors open, but then their eglus are attached to a large pen that has hardcore and hardstanding and an electric fence.

Some people put large bricks / slabs on the skirt of their eglu run as this seems to provide more security from Mr fox

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noisey chicken owners here :oops: so we HAVE to shut the eglu door and we have a dark cover over the top!

 

If we left the door open the little monkeys would be up before 5am and wake the whole of my village.....and yes I only have 2 chickens :shock::lol:

 

They have woken me up before from inside the eglu (door shut) and im in front bedroom and they're out the back :shock:

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Hi. I have started leaving the eglu door open all the time now because I am frantically trying to get my half bald chicken's feathers back after her sister has been helping herself to them. I have started using the foul smelling Ukadex and have put up seed balls and pekka blocks for amusement. I think the pecking must have been going on inside the cube though because I did find the odd feather in there on a couple of occasions and I have never seen it happen in the run ever.

 

So anyway, I leave the Eglu door open - is this risky with foxes. I thought the omlet run that comes with the eglu was fox-proof. I thought the skirting around it made it impossible for the foxes to get their noses under and push it up. Has anyone ever had a fox get in because Omlet said there had never been a fox get in to the runs in the history of them selling them?

 

I really hope I can still leave the door open because I think her feather-loss situation is already getting better.

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