Are they laying and I just haven't seen the eggs yet?!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by MegaChickens, Nov 20, 2012.

  1. MegaChickens

    MegaChickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Our chickens are out of their coop from around 6:30am when I let them out in the morning to when ever it starts to get dark. They go in when the sun starts to go down and than I just close the doors to lock them in for the night. When they are out they have no land boundaries. They haven't started to lay yet, they have egg boxes in their coop and they have the ability to go to their coop at all times. Do I have to worry about them laying anywhere other than in their coop? Should I be looking in the spots through out the bushes that they nest in during the day?
     
  2. FirewifeJess

    FirewifeJess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi MegaChickens! How old is your flock? That would help us figure out your problem with you :) If they're under 6 months old, it's likely they haven't started laying yet; however, if they're older than that they are likely laying under bushes. Chickens are pretty adept at making a nest and hiding their eggs! Let me know :)
     
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Pretend it's Easter and go on a serious egg hunt. Those girls have no idea they're supposed to lay in the nice boxes in the coop. A nice dirt area under a bush sounds so much better to their little brains! Or, if you have a set up where you can confine them for a few days, that can get them in the habit of laying in the nest boxes and they'll often continue.
     
  4. MegaChickens

    MegaChickens Out Of The Brooder

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    They are about 6 month old Orpingtons so I'm expecting them to start laying soon, is their a way for me to teach thm that they are to lay their eggs in there or will I have to always go egg hunting? Right now all they isete egg boxes for is sleeping at night, the rarely roost to sleep.
     
  5. FirewifeJess

    FirewifeJess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like you need to tweak a few things in your coop them. Where are their roosts? They need to be higher than the nest boxes. You really don't want them sleeping in there or your eggs will always be a disgusting poopy mess, trust me, a local friend of mine has yet to take my advice and move her roosts higher and her eggs are terribly contaminated and foul, whereas I have never yet had to wash an egg. Also make sure the roosts are about 4" wide for them to tuck their feet under their feathers.

    As for teaching them to lay in the boxes, you can put dummy eggs in them once they're cleaned out; that's a good signal to a bird that "SOmeone else laid their egg here, it must be a nice safe location for me to do the same thing!" :) If you find out that they're for sure already laying, you can also confine them to their coop and/or run for a few days to train them to lay in the nest boxes. Then once you start letting them out the habit *should* stick. Hope to help!
     
  6. MegaChickens

    MegaChickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 8, 2012
    Alright, I'll try all of those things, thanks for the help!
     

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