Well, Im not sure if my chicks and ducks are all dumb or If Im doing something wrong. I have 14 chicks and 4 ducks. All are almost 6 weeks old. Had them in a brooder for the first 4 weeks and then in the coop for another week enclosed. For the last 5 days, I have opened the chicken door in the morning to let them out into the yard. Well, they will go in and out all day long, sometimes they are all in and others they are all out. But, when it gets dark, they just all lay together in a pile in the yard right at the ramp going into the coop. We have tried throwing feed inside and calling them but no luck. We have to pick every one of them up and stick them in through the door. Once they are in, they are happy. They have a lot of different options for roosting in there, food, water, crates with litter, and have even tried having the heat lamp on and off but seems to make no difference. Once we have them all in we lock the door to the yard so nothing can get in to them. We did have a huge chicken snake get in the coop the second night and it ate two of our chicks. Didnt have anything in there for them to roost on yet so they were stuck on the floor. Is this why? Will they get over it? I killed the snake and have been further snakeproofing the coop. I just dont want to have to go pick them up every evening.
Any ideas and help would be appreciated. This is our first experience with poultry so still learning.