At What Age Do You Open The Nesting Boxes To Chicks

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chris328, May 8, 2011.

  1. chris328

    chris328 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 30, 2011
    i was told not to let the chicks in the nesting boxes so i blocked them of at what age do i allow them access to the nesting boxes?
    thanks for any help
  2. emys

    emys Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 19, 2008
    Well, that may depend on your breeds, leghorns and smaller egg layer types should have access around 4 months and most heavy breeds more like 5 months. Just don't let them sleep in the boxes - they will poop in them and you'll end up with a mess.
  3. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    18 weeks.
  4. <3ChickenForever

    <3ChickenForever Fire Is Catching

    Feb 20, 2011
  5. PepsNick

    PepsNick Back to Business

    May 9, 2010
    Egglanta, GA
    I don't block them off to chicks. I see no reasoning for it.

    If I did, than 16 weeks. Layers before that age are usually either somewhat unhealthy or just temporary pre-mature layers, so they may lay one egg in a corner and that be it.
  6. briteday

    briteday Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 16, 2008
    Northern NV
    Since mine watch the grown hens they learn to lay eggs in the nests. So since the nests are open to the older hens, they are always open to the pullets. However, as soon as I open the grow out pen and allow the pullets to mingle with the flock full time I watch to see if they are looking ready to lay. Generally, about the time they are big enough to integrate, it's about the same time they are ready to lay. Every night after the pullets are integrated I go out at dark and make sure that everyone is sleeping on the roosts, not in the nest boxes. My first 6 hens that I started with were obtained at point of lay. They had never been given a roost and forever, no matter my best tries, slept in the nest boxes. I had poopy eggs until the day I re-homed them a few years later due to age. I will NEVER let another chicken sleep in a nest box!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by