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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay my fellow chicken lovers, I have an issue I need help with. We have a big barn which has 3 large horse stalls. One stall holds my Pot Belly Pig, one is filled with odds and ends (left by the previous owner) and the final stall has a lovely roost with nesting boxes made by my husband. Here is my problem, my chickens will not use the roost or use the nesting boxes. They just wander around in the barn, roosting wherever they want. I would like for them to go in the stall at night and I would let them out in the morning. My flock consist of about 15 hens, 6 roosters, 1 turkey (hen) and 4 ducks, 1 female 3 males. The roosters do not all get along, so that adds to my dilemma. However when they free range everyone gets along for the most part.
Here are my questions.
First how do I get them to roost and use the nesting boxes? Do I put all the roosters in together and cross my fingers?
2. Where should my ducks go?
I do have a Rubbermaid shed that my husband can put up inside the barn, if needed.
My birds do free range outside or if the weather is bad I can let them out in the barn.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
PS I can take pictures if that would help.

315 Posts
Enclose the stall some way so they do not have free run of the barn at night ... Decide what time us bed time and put them in the enclosed stall ... They will get the point about the roosts ... You can also place them on the roost pole after they are asleep.

I would cull the roosters that dont get along ... I would think that apx. 5-6 hens per rooster is a good ratio ... I may be wrong on that but , I'd make soup out of some of them ...

Ducks ... I do not know

Senior Member
1,466 Posts
i think 10 or so hens to 1 rooster is a good number unless you are looking to breed
then you may want a lower %
but i'm with Shane you need to do some culling
if not your hens may end up in really bad shape :(
roosters can really do a # on them over time
i keep my muscovy ducks rite in with my chickens
the turkey needs a mate & they should have their own coop
i would put the feed & water for the chickens in the stall & lock them in for a couple weeks
this way they have a chance to figure out that this is their home
also the roost may be to high
i like a ladder roost so everyone has plenty of roosting space
get some fake eggs or golf balls
add them into to nest boxes so the hens get the idea
every hen wants a cluch of eggs
so when they see a couple fake eggs they think (wow i already have in there to start off with)
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