how do they do it?

We have escaping chickens. I don’t know how they’re getting out.

We always lock them in at night, to protect them from predators.
We’ve seen coyotes in the area already this spring.

Last saturday (in spite of my decision to leave them in so they’d be locked up safe while we were gone for Easter) three quarters of them got out. All doors and windows were closed.
But one door wasn’t locked, so maybe it blew* open?

So the coop door was left open overnight. Good news, we didn’t loose any chickens!
I shut that door late sunday night when we got home. AND MADE SURE all the doors were locked.

Monday it’s raining, so I leave the birds inside**.
Neil gets home from class, and discovers a handful of chickens outside AGAIN.
All the doors were still locked.

I really dislike the idea that my coop has a security flaw big enough for a dumb chicken to escape. That means the smart predators could get in…

Neil thinks maybe they’re hiding UNDER the coop at night, instead of going inside.

*Note, doors usually only blow open if there is a window or door already open so the air can get inside, but it’s not impossible.

**Because on rainy days all they’ll do is run from the coop to our porch, and then poop all over it all day long.

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5 responses to “how do they do it?

  1. Our dark cornish were escaping from a run that was fully enclosed with chicken wire. We had them locked up for a few days in a new-to-them coop, but they wanted nothing to do with it. It took us a few days to figure out they were climbing up a crossbeam and weaving themselves over and under through a small gap in the chicken wire.

    Dumb birds! Why don’t they understand we’re locking them up for their own safety??? Good luck!

  2. What is WordPress doing to me!!?? That comment is from me – JoAnnaSpring. So odd!

    • The only thing I can think (beside the door blowing open, or the birds not actually going inside at night) is that they’re going out through the openings in the eves above the walls… I’d believe this if it were just the flightly little brown ones, but I don’t think the brahmas can fly that well…

  3. Let me tell you, chickens are tricksy. And dumb. But still tricksy.

    • You’re right, and it’s this combination of dumb and tricksy which means we’ll probably NEVER know. But at least they’ve stopped doing it (for now)

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