All laying in the same nest box-crowding/pushing

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jbrown_14105, Nov 12, 2010.

  1. jbrown_14105

    jbrown_14105 Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 24, 2010
    Ok I have the 5 hens, all laying fine now, most days 5 hens=5 eggs....however they all want to lay in the same nest box!
    The coop has 6 nest boxes, all the same, all filled with nesting materials the same but "the girls" want to all lay their eggs in the same nest box, the far right one, once in a great while the far left one by the door!
    So is this also some strange "pecking order" thing?
    I open the lid of the nest boxes (all in a row, one cover) and one is laying, another is pushing to get in there (sometimes two are crowded in the same nest box already) where the one hen is already, and another is standing just outside the nest box waiting for the second hen to nest where the first one is already sitting! (all the rest of the nesting box area is empty while this is going on!)
    In the end of this there are 5 eggs, all together in the one nest box, once in awhile there is a "nail hole" in one or two eggs, but not to often.
    I'm considering moving the eggs, one to each nest box to see if "anyone" notices and gets an idea!
    Chicken brains aren't too big ya know!
    Any ideas on "chicken psychology".....
    Jim Brown
    Lockport NY
  2. dogdollar

    dogdollar Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 19, 2010
    Here are my nest boxes, attached to the side of the coop.
    Inside are two nest areas, identical in size, both filled with clean hay.
    I have nine hens. They only use one of the boxes........and it's not unusual at all for me to find nine eggs in it every day, and no indication that anyone even ENTERED the other box. Go figure.
    I have seen two of them in the same box at the same time, and I have seen one hen go in and drag a smaller hen out by her comb so she can get in there to lay her egg.

  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I don't know if it is a "She laid there so it must be a good place to lay" thing or "If I lay where she did, maybe she'll hatch my egg so I won't have to"? In any case, it is standard behavior.

    I fine that if I put eggs in different nests, it does tend to move the laying around a little.
  4. BethieofVA

    BethieofVA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 27, 2010
    Yorktown, Virginia
    I have six, five laying and laying all in the same box. They wait in line and there are three boxes total.
  5. 1newchickontheblock

    1newchickontheblock Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 7, 2010
    Eastern MA
    I have 9, (6 standard, 3 silkies), and one community nest box. I've seen 2 at a time in there, otherwise they wait their turn [​IMG]

    Can you remove partitions or anything, to make one box larger, more community style...? Good luck!
  6. kano

    kano Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 24, 2008
    Santiago de Chile
    I have 16 and 4 nest boxes, with fake eggs in every one. They use all. And , yes there are some favorites.
  7. huckleberryfarm

    huckleberryfarm Chickenista

    Jan 7, 2010
    Greenwood, SC
    Me too. I have 16 nest boxes and probably only 3 get used. There will be 6 eggs sitting in there. No idea why. And I definitely will see two or three hens jammed into the same one while all the ones around them are empty. I've wondered about that too! [​IMG]
  8. shuizar209

    shuizar209 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 11, 2009
    Hens like to laywhere there are other eggs. Try putting afew fake eggs in the other unused boxes.
  9. jbrown_14105

    jbrown_14105 Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 24, 2010
    Thanks for all the info...figured it must be a "chicken thing" (small brains)
    I have tried the fake eggs idea... they couldn't care less.....made no impact at all.
    Other than that the "girls" have provided great entertainment for all living on the property.
    Though "Barnyard Bert" our barn cat gets very offended when the chickens go in the garage barn where he sleeps & takes his's "his" house ya is just "upsetting"
    Jim Brown
    Lockport NY

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