1 Nest Box???? Newbie coop builder

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ChiknMama, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. ChiknMama

    ChiknMama Chirping

    Apr 26, 2011
    We are putting together our coop today. We have 3 hens and were wondering if 1 nest box is enough or do we need a minimum of 2? We have 2 larger breeds, a buff orpington and a black australorp along with an EE. So also wondering what size we should make the nesting box or boxes. Thanks.

  2. DFamilyChicks

    DFamilyChicks In the Brooder

    May 11, 2011
    Bellingham, WA
    I'm not an expert...but I've read that one nesting box for three birds is fine. I made my boxes W12" x L12" and 15" tall.

    Have fun.
  3. sammyh312

    sammyh312 Chirping

    May 22, 2011
    If they are built-ins and you have the room, you might as well build at least four, cause you know you're gonna wind up with more chickens than you planned:D they will probably only wind up using just one box though.
  4. ChiknMama

    ChiknMama Chirping

    Apr 26, 2011
    Guess I should have said it would be external nesting box(es) not inside. We are saving as much inside space for the girls as possible since we have fairly long winters here and they will be in the coop with and indoor run for a good while when it snows etc.
  5. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Songster

    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    I have a double wide for 4 and two will go in at a time to lay. Mine is external also.
  6. SkyWalker209

    SkyWalker209 In the Brooder

    May 23, 2011
    Tuolumne, CA
    I was told one box for 3 hens. I built two for 6 hens. One got killed and one ended up being a rooster. So now I have two boxes for 4 hens. I think it'll be just fine. If you (they) have the space I would build a one or two more.
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    If you can, I suggest two. They will probably all use the same one almost all the time, but two gives you some flexibility in how you manage them. The obvious need for an extra one is if one goes broody and won't let the other two lay with her, but I find a little more flexibility is usually a good thing. If two is a problem, one will work.

    For your breeds, I think 12" x 12" is a good minimum size. A little bigger won't hurt but is really not necessary. I made mine 16" x 16" with the thought that two might want to lay at the same time. Usually they don't but I have seen three in there at one time.

    As far as height, it depends some on how you frame it. I like a 5" to 6" lip across the bottom to keep them from scatching out the bedding and eggs, then leave a 6" to 8" opening above that for the door. 6" does not look like much but I have used that successfully for the opening height.

  8. equinelyn

    equinelyn Chirping

    Jun 4, 2011
    Southern York County
    I have 4 hens and they all like to lay in the same spot. We pick up the eggs in one clutch every morning. I think it's fine.
  9. bryan99705

    bryan99705 Songster

    1 is plenty for now but if your coop can handle more birds then consider 2 boxes. Remember if you set them up off the floor, you don't loose floor space.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2011
  10. ChiknMama

    ChiknMama Chirping

    Apr 26, 2011
    Thanks to all of you for the advice...we went with one,off the floor. If need be we can add another later. Will be posting pics of the coop at a later date....we got alot done today and it is time to relax [​IMG]

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