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How many nesting boxes per hen?

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 

How many nesting boxes is necessary? I have read several answers throughout the net. At first I thought I would need one for each hen but then learned that they will lay in the same box. Is there a general rule - for example, two hens per box? Some say 1 nest box for every 4-5 chickens.

post #2 of 31

Mine is set up for 4-5 hens per box in the larger coop which houses the majority of the hens, however, in the French coop there are 5 boxes to 12 hens.  They really only use 3 of those 5 boxes.


Edited by chicks4kids - 4/19/11 at 9:42am
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Women are Angels and when someone breaks our wings, we  simply continue to fly....on a broomstick

Build your own Predator trap...click here... The Master Trapper .
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post #3 of 31

I have 3 boxes and 3 hens, they all lay in one box, the same box.

post #4 of 31

I'm not sure about the rule. I have 11 hens & 6 nesting boxes & they lay eggs in all of them. I'll walk in the coop & see 5 or 6 hens sitting in their boxes.I usually get 10 eggs a day. So my theory is more boxes more eggs.

I'm out of eggs. But I know where some brown ones are. I now raise big Ol' Honkin' Bob Whites & Layed back Coturnix. Pray For Rain In Texas!

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I'm out of eggs. But I know where some brown ones are. I now raise big Ol' Honkin' Bob Whites & Layed back Coturnix. Pray For Rain In Texas!

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post #5 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrockpotsMama 

I have 3 boxes and 3 hens, they all lay in one box, the same box.


Funny! That really puts things into perspective, thank you.

post #6 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 7L Farm 

I'm not sure about the rule. I have 11 hens & 6 nesting boxes & they lay eggs in all of them. I'll walk in the coop & see 5 or 6 hens sitting in their boxes.I usually get 10 eggs a day. So my theory is more boxes more eggs.


Good point... more boxes, more eggs. How will I ever decide? I might as well have more than needed at this point since everyone has a different opinion. I don't want to have too few, that's for sure.

post #7 of 31

Someone on here, and I deeply regret that I forget who b/c it was brilliantly funny, posted on another thread like this that the usual advice of one nestbox per 4-5 hens was clearly true because <insert pic of 4 of her hens all crammed into one box at the same time>.

It's true, too.

I mean, you can GIVE them more boxes if you have the room and the ambition, maybe they will even use some of them sometimes, but, one box per four hens is plenty and one per 2-3 hens is bordering on excessive smile  Remember they are sort of instinctually programmed to add to existing clutches of eggs rather than start new ones, so they are generally *attracted to* a box with existing egg(s) in it, that's why fake nest-eggs work in fact.

Good luck, have fun,

Pat

post #8 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrockpotsMama 

I have 3 boxes and 3 hens, they all lay in one box, the same box.


Maybe they like work together..big_smile

Feel free to visit my Building A Chicken Coop blog to get some tips about backyard chicken and chicken coop.  buildingachickencoopblog.blogspot.com.
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Feel free to visit my Building A Chicken Coop blog to get some tips about backyard chicken and chicken coop.  buildingachickencoopblog.blogspot.com.
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post #9 of 31

Ive read alot on BYC but I think to get more eggs you gotta have more chickens ...lol... I had 6 boxes and 20 hens they all lined up for a box I had modified to make it a little more private for a hen I "thought" was broody . all my hens started laying in that box so I changed the set up to 3 spacious and very private boxes 24"x18" with a smaller opening in them for the hens to go in instead of being open all the way across the front and they all get used and the girls dont seem to spook off the nest when I go in the coop now.

post #10 of 31

I have read up on this the last couple of days. for larger breed birds a box of 12 x 14 x14 and at least 2 for 6 chickens.
I have been reading up on chickens for quit some time to learn as much as possible. Yes I am a newbie to raising chickens.smile

Now I know why the chicken crossed the road.
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Now I know why the chicken crossed the road.
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