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SCRAMBLED-EGGS

Why are they roosting outside in the rain?

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I am worried about 4 of my 5 chicks because they seem to prefer roosting on a perch outside in the rain over their nice warm Igloo hen house. At the moment the lowest ranked chicken is the only one indoors.  Is there any need or way to make them go in?    

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There are various reasons why they might not go in to roost:

How old are they?

Have they previously gone in the coop?

Have you checked for red mites?

You may need to get in the run and pop them into the eglu and shut the door - they way, they will soon learn that its the place to be at night. It sounds as if you might not have a waterproof cover on your run - it would be best to get a clear tarp to cover it and keep them dry.

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I’m not sure this will be of much use to you but sometimes they just seem contrary.

I have a flock of 9 mixed bantams. Until the last month or so they’ve all gone into the house at night (except sometimes bottom hen Duck the pekin who sometimes ends up on the perch outside the door - but that’s still inside the covered run and she always makes it inside in really wet and windy weather). But recently, if they’re free ranging at bedtime, one of my three Dutch bantams has started to roost on the roof of the run half under the magnolia tree. If they’re inside the run at bedtime she’ll go in the house as normal. I wait until it’s dark and then go out and put her inside - I’ve seen her do it even one night when it was absolutely bucketing down with rain - she looked very miserable.

I don’t think there’s any real reason for it, but it’s definitely habit forming so something you do need to try to break if their chosen sleeping location isn’t secure.

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Thanks - really useful.

My girls are very young.  They've all JUST begun to lay, so they are a bit dizzy.  They all came from one farm where they were kept in clean controlled conditions inside, so I guess since getting to my chicken run 2 weeks ago they have been very surprised and amazed that "outside" exists.  Their run is a Mk2 3 metre egloo, plus a 2 metres high (2 x 2 x 2) outside run, with a couple of perches.  They seem to love flying round the outside run.  I can only suppose that they like flying up to the perch, which is why they roost there.  They like that better than walking up the stairs to the hen house.

Their hen house is new so I don't think it's got red mites yet.

The idea of getting a see-through cover is a good one.

 

Edited by SCRAMBLED-EGGS

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2 hours ago, SCRAMBLED-EGGS said:

Their hen house is new so I don't think it's got red mites yet.

 

Best get onto that prevention programme pronto! :wink:

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