I stumbled on this tidbit and could see all kinds of possibilities for my characters to run into trouble or have a bonding experience when moving chickens. When I was young my father and I raised chickens. We did not move our coup but when we had a season of no chickens the weeds grew over ten feet tall in the penned in area from all the manure. So when I stumbled over this I thought it was extremely practical. Enjoy!
Movable fowl-houses are used exclusively, with the exception of some large ones for hatching-rooms. By building small, light, and low, with strong sills made on purpose for runners, the houses may be moved every spring by an ordinary team, to the section tilled the previous summer. The distance traveled in transferring 100 fowl-houses, from one 6O-acre lot to_ another, is one-third of a mile for each building, and back with no load. The amount of labor is much less than would be involved in hauling the manure, mixed with dry earth, from the buildings. The moving is acoomplished systematically; the fowls belonging to a building being all moved in one flock in a large box made on purpose, in which they are quietly entrapped when attempting to leave their house in the morning by placing it adjoining, after which the box is darkened and drawn upon runners, on which it stands, to the new station. On arriving they are immediately allowed to escape into a spare house, shaped and colored like the one they left, placed before-hand, when they are ready to commence their day as usual, the whole operation of removal occupying only a few minutes.
Source: An Egg Farm ©1891
Referring to a "broody hen"
most hens will bear moving, nest and all, to a quiet place; but a great many will not like to be taken out of the chosen nest, and placed in another.
Source: Rural Life Described and Illustrated ©1868