Grit and flying!
My four youngsters have been flying for about 5 weeks now. I generally fly them twice a day, morning and evening. Just casually taking notice of how long they fly, how high they go. I have a couple instances where they went high enough they were hard to see. Also a couple of times where they flew for around an hour on their own.
I read a thread here or maybe it was a linked site that mentioned several things to make them fly longer. One thing struck me was make sure they have grit. When I read that I thought, holy cow, I forgot to put their grit back in the young birds loft. They haven't had their grit pan in well over a month by accident. So two days previous, I put their grit back and noticed they were all over it like they usually do their feed. Then last night I let them out to fly with at least two hours of daylight left which has always been way more time than they need. Fast forward and my dang birds were still high up in the sky well after sunset last night. It started to scare me as I thought they might get lost. I kept running out to check on them and finally as it was getting completely dark (and I could see the bats darting around) they were doing their circle just above the loft. They finally crash landed onto the roof and there was no way they could find the trap. I had to crawl up there and flash them and net them to get them safely back in the loft before an owl found them.
I can't believe a little grit and now my birds won't come down. I guess it helped them digest their seed and gave them a ton more energy?!?