If you raise chickens, you’ve probably asked, “Where do chickens hide when scared?” a million times. And because of their small size, it’s really hard to find them most of the time.
That’s why I’m here to try to help you out and give you some suggestions for the common hiding places scared chickens resort to.
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Where Can My Scared Chickens Be Hiding?
As I said, the tiny bodies of chickens can fit almost anywhere. And trust me, I totally understand what you must be going through!
So, let’s try to brainstorm some of the places where your chicken can be hiding.
If your backyard or front yard has bushes, start by looking there. Don’t just skim, though, or you might not notice your chicken. Walk slowly amid the bushes and push the leaves and branches left and right. Try not to miss any spot.
If you grow trees in your backyard or front yard, search the branches. You might find your chicken in a nest on top of a low branch.
Your chicken might be hiding inside or behind some plant pot that you’d normally overlook. After all, chickens often feel comfortable laying eggs in the soil.
Any Random, Tight Place
Whether it’s in your backyard or even inside your house, you might find your chicken in the smallest, most random places.
If your chicken does manage to get into the house, they can literally be anywhere. Expect the unexpected! Here are some examples:
- Under/behind the furniture
- Under/behind your stove
- Under/behind your fridge
- Inside lockers
- Inside garbage cans
- Behind the staircase (if any)
How to Stop My Chicken From Hiding?
Chickens are known to be cowardly for a reason: There is no shortage of things that scare them. And if you’re looking for a way to stop the hiding, you must understand why they do it so you can keep your chicken feeling secure.
Some of the things that may be causing your chicken to hide are:
If a predator attacks your chickens, they’ll take weeks to recover from the mental trauma.
While the injured chickens might suffer more, even those that weren’t injured will have a hard time getting over the terrifying experience.
As a result of this fear, your chickens will develop patterns of abnormal behavior, including hiding in secret places.
To protect your chickens from possible predator attacks, you should keep them in a safe, enclosed place that predators can’t dig their way into.
Scorching and frigid temperatures can stress out your chickens. Unhealthy chickens can’t handle temperatures that go below 32 °F or above 75 °F
To protect your chickens from such extreme temperatures, make sure their place is well-covered and shaded. In the winter, you can buy them a coop heater.
They are also scared of thunder and lightning, so make sure they have some place to hide.
Just like humans, chickens might get stressed upon changing their environment. This is because chickens psychologically connect to the place they live in, and it becomes hard for them to readjust to new places and people.
You should try to give them time to adapt. Make sure that their new keepers, if you’re giving them away, will stay away from them for a while.
If there are other chickens in the new home, try separating between the old ones and the new ones, and start introducing them to each other slowly.
Insects’ bites stress out chickens and cause discomfort. Sometimes they can even lead to death!
Out of all the insects that can haunt your chickens, the red mite is one of the most dangerous. The red mite sucks your chickens’ blood to the point that they become ill. In some cases, the bite of a red mite can be fatal to chicken.
I know this can be hard, but you should try to keep insects away from your chickens’ coop as much as possible.
Whether it’s from humans or machines, excessive noises frighten chickens and might drive them to hide.
It’s best to try to be quiet around chickens and avoid making any loud noises that might scare them. If that’s not possible, put them somewhere far from any possible noises.
What Other Things Do Chickens Do When Scared or Stressed?
Hiding isn’t the only thing chickens do when scared. There are a number of other signs you may be overlooking as well. Some of such signs are:
Such overwhelming energy is not a good thing, though. When chickens are scared or stressed, they’ll deplete their glucose reserves faster, which will inevitably impact growth.
You’ll notice increased energy if your chickens are extra alert and active. They’ll look as if they’re prepared to run at any given opportunity, even if you’re not doing anything to scare them.
If you notice that your chicken isn’t growing normally or that its muscles are degrading increasingly, this might be a sign of stress, though there could be other causes.
Chickens typically go through six growth stages. If you notice that some of your chickens are lagging in these stages, I recommend visiting a vet.
If your chickens are scared or stressed, you’ll notice that they refrain from eating. This anorexic condition can actually be found in many living organisms.
Grown-up chickens usually consume a quarter pound of feed daily. If you notice that your chicken hasn’t been finishing its usual daily dose of food, that’s a red flag.
Stressed chickens often stop laying eggs. So if you notice that your chicken hasn’t been reproducing as they should, this might mean that they aren’t feeling safe.
Though the reproduction of each chicken varies, it’s estimated that a chicken should lay about 12 eggs per year.
A scared or stressed chicken will try to run away, not just hide in your house. I think that this is one of the signs really worth worrying about.
The other signs happen in front of you. Once you notice them, you can try to fix the problem. As for this one, you just wake up one day and find that your chicken is missing, and you’re left to look for this tiny creature anywhere you can think of. It’s hard, I know!
This is why, as soon as they disappear, you have to try and find them as quickly as possible. Start looking around the neighborhood before they go further.
What Can I Do to Get My Scared Chickens to Come Out of Their Hiding Place?
To speed up the process of finding your chickens, I have two suggestions that may help in getting your chicken to return to their coop voluntarily.
Make Sure Their Coop Is Safe and Comfortable
If your chickens have been attacked by a predator, make sure their coop is now safe. After some time, I’m sure they’ll return to it when they notice that no other attack has occurred.
You can also make sure that the coop temperature is suitable. That way, they’ll be tempted to go back to it.
Good old temptation methods! Just like a cat, a dog, and even me, you can get your chicken to come out of their hiding place using chicken treats.
You can grab the chicken treats and walk around the house, so they can smell them and come out.
Our pets always drive us crazy with their constant worry and hiding, but we’d still go above and beyond looking for them.
If you can’t find your chicken, don’t panic and don’t underestimate it either. Look for them in any place you can think of.
If you still can’t find them anywhere, quickly let your neighbors know so that they’ll be on the lookout. You can also make a Facebook post about it. You never know who might run into them.
Most importantly, though, try to keep your chickens’ coop a safe haven for them. Try your best to make sure they’re in a stress-free environment, so they wouldn’t feel the need to hide in the first place.