14 hens laying everywhere. Please help me

pattgal

Songster
9 Years
Apr 20, 2010
600
2
139
New Brunswick, Canada
I know this question has probably already been posted before but i cannot find it
I have 14 hens (given to me with this problem) who use their nestbox as a toilet and lay anywhere.
they poop everywhere too, but mostly in the nestbox. its not like they are spending alot of time in there either. They just go in, poop, and come out
How do I fix this? Please help me, i can't imagine spending the rest of the winter like this
sickbyc.gif
 

pgpoultry

Songster
10 Years
Oct 16, 2009
2,290
47
191
Wales
Try placing fake eggs in the nest box and keeping your girls in for longer in the morning, this will increase the likelihood of laying in the boxes,

Sandie
 

DAFox

Songster
10 Years
Nov 7, 2009
381
14
111
SW MO in Vernon Co
I just looked at your BYC page. Some of your birds are Silkies. Start off by separating them at night into their own area. They might be spending the night in the nest box and dirtying it. Alot of Silkies don't roost and would rather be in a "pile".
Or you can cover the hole to the nest box when you close up for the night. See if that helps. Open the nest box early in the morning.
Put in an egg-look-a-like in the nest box. Golf ball, store bought egg, plastic or ceramic egg, etc.
Good luck,
Dale-Ann
ETA: Clean your nest boxes! Put fresh straw in.
 
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pattgal

Songster
9 Years
Apr 20, 2010
600
2
139
New Brunswick, Canada
Quote:
Sorry I forgot to mention, these are all red hens. I kinda figured something was up when they were given to me for free.
they came from a religious organization called the trapistines (don't know what that is except it involves nuns). all I know is they had alot of hens (100-200+) So I can see why they have no manners.
the nestbox is on the ground, the roost is up high, there were golf balls in the nestbox. .....
edited to ad, the silkies are part of my "special bunch" they are in a separate coop
 
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sheaviance1

Songster
9 Years
Apr 7, 2010
1,180
4
176
Tennessee
Can you handle them at all? When my ladies first started laying, I had a couple who didn't want to lay in the boxes, so I stalked them one weekend and placed them in the nest box when they started the pre-egg pace. They have been using them ever since. I have one pullet who couldn't fly up to my boxes either. They now have a ladder for reaching them as well.

Good luck!!
 

Judy

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
597
448
South Georgia
How high is the roost? Do they ever go up there? They might need a ladder or a step until they get used to it.

I believe I'd try closing the nest boxes off completely, and placing them on the roost nightly at dark. I'd let them lay wherever they were til they accepted the roost and went up on their own. In other words, I'd teach the roost first, then the nest. Since they aren't laying in the nest boxes anyway, you're not teaching them a bad habit.

Retraining adults is probably trickier than training juveniles.
 
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7L Farm

Songster
9 Years
Jul 22, 2010
4,635
86
231
Anderson, Texas
Quote:
Sorry I forgot to mention, these are all red hens. I kinda figured something was up when they were given to me for free.
they came from a religious organization called the trapistines (don't know what that is except it involves nuns). all I know is they had alot of hens (100-200+) So I can see why they have no manners.
the nestbox is on the ground, the roost is up high, there were golf balls in the nestbox. .....
edited to ad, the silkies are part of my "special bunch" they are in a separate coop

Just a thought maybe raise the nest boxes up off the ground.
 

pattgal

Songster
9 Years
Apr 20, 2010
600
2
139
New Brunswick, Canada
All of them use the roost. they are pretty good socially. they are fairly easy to catch and don't fuss like my new but useless marans do.
ddawn: their roost is partly made out of a ladder. I think taking the nest box out for now is probably a good idea though

Does anyone think its odd that they are not all laying in the same spot?, I thought it was chicken instinct to accumulate eggs not spread them out

sheaviance1: what does the pre egg pace look like? these hens lay all the way into the evening... this could be time consuming but as a last resort i would be stubborn enough to do it this way
 

MANNA-PRO

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