All in one box.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Murphydog, Feb 10, 2016.

  1. Murphydog

    Murphydog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 29, 2016
    I have 6 3-month old pullets, they are housed in a large run with a box on one side with three segmented boxes, the two end boxes are of equal size and are about 1'x1'x1', the box in the middle is longer than the other two. Tonight I went to check on them and noticed they were all together in the same box, however there just isn't enough room for them in the one box. Why are they all together in the same box, and how do I get them to split up and use the other two boxes?
     
  2. Peeps61

    Peeps61 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are they sleeping in the boxes or are you referring to their laying eggs? If it's sleeping, they should be roosting rather than sleeping in nesting boxes.

    If it's because they are laying eggs, you won't break them of that. They all like to lay their eggs with the other eggs, so they'll all try to lay in the same box, regardless of how many are available. Sometimes, the chickens in the lower pecking order will use the other boxes because they won't challenge a more dominant hen. Then, the dominant hen will scratch the eggs on over into HER pile of eggs! It's the funniest thing I've ever seen! [​IMG]
     
  3. Murphydog

    Murphydog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 29, 2016
    They aren't laying yet. They're only 3 months old right now. I have a roost set up for them too, and none of them have ever even tried to use it. They usually sleep in the boxes, right now they aren't asleep yet and are just huddled in there together (Probably trying to sleep).
     
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    There maybe a few things to consider.

    1.Make sure your roost is higher than the nesting boxes
    2. Block off the nesting boxes for now, as they are not yet laying
    3. They may need a bit of encouragement to use the roost - try putting them on the roost once its dark

    Young chickens, if they have not been raised by a mother hen sometimes need a bit of "training" when it comes to using roosts and blocking off the nests will help them "unlearn" that nests are for sleeping in. It may take a while, but they will get there in the end.
    CT
     
  5. Murphydog

    Murphydog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 29, 2016
    Thank you, is it dangerous if they are all nesting in the same box? Can they smother each other?
     
  6. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Not really, but once they start laying, the nest will be soiled and thats not nice either for you or the chickens - thats why blocking off access to the nests - particularly on a night time is important.

    CT
     
  7. Murphydog

    Murphydog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 29, 2016
    Thanks. I'll block off the nests tomorrow. I placed them on the roosts earlier this evening.
     
  8. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    You are most welcome! - just remember that it may take some time before they get the hang of roosting.

    all the best
    CT
     
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Roosts are best about 12" higher than nests,
    long enough to give each bird about 12" of space,
    wide enough to be comfortable to hunker down on,
    easy to get up to and down from without crashing into anything.

    If roosts are amenable they shouldn't want to sleep in nests,
    but if they do, just keep covering nests at night before they go to roost.

    You can put fake eggs in all nests, that will spread the love and deter nest crowding
     
  10. Murphydog

    Murphydog Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 29, 2016
    Just a quick update, they are all roosting now and have started laying, they are laying in different boxes too!!!
     

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