All the Hens sleep in one nesting box!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by tayfee, Jul 16, 2011.

  1. tayfee

    tayfee New Egg

    Jul 15, 2011
    I had my girls out in the yard the other day and kinda forgot they were out, oops! I remembered when it was dark and went to make sure they were in their coop. I have 6 hens, and I wanted to make sure they all in. So, I open the coop door and all 6 of them are crammed in one nesting box! They were sitting on top of one another. I had to pick the ones on top up to make sure they were all in there. They have always slept on top of each other, but 2 of them just started laying, so I just put the nesting in the coop. I live in southern VA, so it’s not like it’s cold at night. Is this normal? And how to I stop them from sleeping in their nesting box? It’s full of poo everyday!
  2. damselfish

    damselfish Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 8, 2008
    Southwest Missouri
    You have roosts for them, right? Just pick them up and put them on their roosts each night. After several nights, they will get the idea. You are doing the right thing to want to break them of this habit right away. Poopy eggs are really gross.

    If you don't have roosts set up yet, check out the coop construction section for tons of ideas, but basically a two by four set flat (with the wide part up), makes a fine roost. A big branch is good too, if you have easy access to downed wood. The roost should be higher than the nest boxes because their instinct is to get up high at night. Hope this helps.

    And I forgot to say: [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Edited because: I can't type or think worth a darn at this time of day.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2011
  3. NixNoodleNumbat

    NixNoodleNumbat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2011
    My hens do the same thing. Its completely natural. As for fixing the situation… I'm not sure. I just put up with poopy eggs.
  4. spotstealer

    spotstealer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2011
    Poynette, WI
    Mine roosted in the nesting box a couple times when they were younger, pre-egg laying age. I blocked off the nesting boxes until they were just about old enough to lay. They immediately started using the roosting boards. I opened up the nesting boxes when they were about 15 wks old, and put a few golf balls in the boxes (my intent was to train them from pecking at the eggs when they arrive as well as to use the nesting boxes, it worked!). We were on vacation when they started laying. My son stopped by to care for them while we were gone. Only one egg was dropped from the roost, from then on, the smart ol' girls used the nesting boxes.

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