Do Chickens Sleep At Night?

Everyone would probably agree that chickens can make great alarm clocks.

After all, they are already up and ready for the day as early as dawn.

While we are all aware that chickens wake up really early, their sleeping routine might still be a mystery for some people.

Do you know when do chickens sleep at night or how many hours do they sleep?

Well, to give you a hint: their routine is slightly peculiar. 

By peculiar, don’t think that chickens do not actually fall asleep or anything.

Chickens do sleep at night, but their concept of night starts when the sky is turning dark.

In other words, chickens sleep according to the sunset, the daylight, or the timetable.

So, once the sun is gone, chickens are also getting ready to fall asleep.

They only follow their instincts, as dark makes them extremely vulnerable. 

Pretty interesting right

Let’s get into more detail about chickens and sleeping!

Carry on reading

What Time Should Chickens Go To Bed?

There is no specific time that chickens need to follow when they are about to sleep.

These domestic birds mainly follow their instincts when they are going to sleep, and when they are going to wake up.

It all depends on the day timetable, especially since sunset comes at a different timing every single day.

Chickens know that they need to call it a day when the sun has gone down.

Meaning to say, once daylight is gone or once everything has turned dark, chickens will head to their own coops and rest. 

This is why chickens are likely to rest and sleep earlier in winter, compared to summer. 

The main reason why they go to bed as early as dusk falls is because dark renders them blind, making them extremely vulnerable to predators. 

Related article – When do hawks hunt chickens?

Do Chickens Like To Sleep In The Dark? 

Like any other living beings, chickens need to sleep in a dark environment to rest properly.

Even though they cannot see very well in the dark, these birds still like to sleep at night.

Without a proper good sleep, they might become too stressed and develop behavioral problems.

Naturally, they will likely become sick too. 

Chickens like to sleep in the dark as they will have a really good night’s sleep.

However, it will only be possible if they know that there are no possible lurking predators around the area.

These birds will surely remain alert even when they are sleeping when they think that they are not entirely safe throughout the night. 

How Many Hours Do Chickens Sleep At Night? 

Chickens generally follow the timetable of the day.

In other words, they sleep as early as dusk, and wake up as early as dawn.

Therefore, chickens usually sleep for at least 8 long hours each night.

This, however, may still depend on the chicken.

Age and personality are great factors as to why some other chickens have different sleeping routines.

For instance, older birds will also take several naps every day, then sleep for longer hours at night.

On the contrary, chicks are the most active at daylight, then sleep early to get more hours of sleep.

Personality-wise, some chickens can be light sleepers or heavy sleepers.

One can perfectly achieve a good, deep sleep than other chickens.

It also means that there are birds that can’t really fall asleep that nicely at night. 

But in general, chickens follow the daylight.

If it’s dark, it means it’s bedtime.

Similarly, they will begin their day as soon as the dawn breaks.

This will let them have a consistent 8 hours of sleep, provided that there are no predators that could keep them awake. 

Do Chickens Need To Be Shut In At Night?

It is best and highly recommended to shut in your chickens at night.

Closing their runs or coops would only mean an extra protection for their safety.

Your chickens would be able to sleep soundly and comfortably when they know that no predators would be able to target them. 

Related article – Will seagulls attack chickens?

Chickens are one of the common prey among many predators in the wild.

Foxes, racoons, birds of prey, snakes, and many wild predators can easily snatch away and kill chickens.

They need to be shut in at night to always keep them safe and give them a peace of mind. 

Still, it all depends on the owner.

If you are confident that your entire coop or run is safe from all kinds of predators, then shutting them in might be pretty unnecessary. 

Related article – Chicken sleeping on the ground

Wrapping Up

Chickens generally follow the presence of daylight when it comes to their sleeping routine.

They usually get a good 8 hours of sleep every night to become perfectly active and healthy each day. 

These birds often go back to their coops when dusk begins, and generally wake everyone up as soon as the sun rises. 

They only follow their instincts, like any other birds.

Chickens don’t particularly like to wander in the dark as they cannot see everything properly.

This is why they are extremely vulnerable and make easy targets for other predators.

Hence, it is recommended to make their coops safer by shutting them in or putting extra protection.

Related article – Chicken keeps falling asleep
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