I have for now given up trying to get Mango and Cloud to go in the chicken shed by themselves. For three nights Cloud went in the chicken shed while the nest box was covered but Mango was obviously stressed at being out on her own and unable to sit on top of the nest box.
There was a huge amount of sloppy poop all over the chickens’ patio area. It made more clearing up for me but more to the point it showed me that Mango was stressed. I went back to leaving the nest boxes uncovered and Mango and Cloud resumed sitting on top and the poop went back to just a few normal poops. This meant it was quick for me to clean up and to put Mango and Cloud in.
I know that it is Mango that is the problem. Cloud wants to go in but is torn by wanting to stay with Mango. I had back up of this a few nights ago.
Mango went into the nest box late in the day to lay her egg. It was half past five and the pop hole had been closing at half past six. When I went up at dusk Mango had laid her egg and was out on her own but Cloud was perched in the chicken shed. Cloud must have gone in while Mango was out of sight in the nest box.
This is really frustrating but I am all out of ideas so for now I will continue to put Mango and Cloud in each night. I keep hoping when it gets colder maybe they will start going in but I am getting to the point of wondering if it’s ever going to happen.
In other news Sugar went broody after laying seven eggs in two and a half weeks. She has just had two nights in the broody crate in the shed and is now through it. As I had hoped she isn’t quite as committed at this time of year. I hope this will be the end of her egg laying for this year.
Dot last laid a week ago and is dropping long feathers so I think she is finished for this year. That leaves both Autumn and Mango laying every other day.
The day before yesterday it rained most of the day. I find it amusing that although the run is roofed the older girls like to spend time in the shelter when it’s raining. But it is times like this that we have a flock of two halves. All the older girls were in the shelter together but the three newer girls were pottering about in the run. I have never seen them in the shelter as yet.
Yesterday it rained so hard late afternoon that at half past five when I was giving out the bedtime sunflower hearts the pop hole closed and caught us all out. I had to open the chicken shed door and guide them all in. At least Mango and Cloud went in at the same time as the rest of the flock. I shall give them the bedtime sunflower hearts at the earlier time of five o’clock.
It will be a work in progress to see if Mango and Cloud ever go in by themselves but for now I will continue to do what I am doing.