Building a nest???

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Southern28Chick, Feb 12, 2008.

  1. Southern28Chick

    Southern28Chick Flew The Coop

    Apr 16, 2007
    I was collecting eggs this morning and noticed that there was plastic and other debris in the bottom nest box. Do hens collect nesting material like wild birds?
  2. hypnofrogstevie

    hypnofrogstevie chick magnet

    Jul 12, 2007
    Newton NJ
    My girls would take hay and make a nest out of it. Yet they lay the egg on the dirt in there run.
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I am glad you asked this because I keep wondering as well. What do wild, or many-generations-feral, chickens do?

  4. tvtaber

    tvtaber Songster

    Aug 2, 2007
    Central CA
    HI! I've seen feral chickens lay under trees, in bushes, etc, and they seem to make a dirt hollow and lay there; sort of like the hole they make for dust baths. Some less domesticated breeds may make better nests, but generally they want to lay in a good place and walk away so are not as fussy as a broody hen may be.

    Some of mine collect sticks and other little things that are close to the nest boxes and work a little nest up, but they will not go far for materials and are as likely to scoop everything out and lay on the plywood floor of the nest.

    Last edited: Feb 12, 2008
  5. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    My girls will hollow a place in the very far corners of the barn where the litter is the deepest and this is where several of them had suddenly started laying. I added alot more and deeper shavings to the nests boxes and they are back to laying in the boxes.
  6. Kaneke

    Kaneke Songster

    mine, which have probably GONE feral (hatched domestic, escaped), will gather together some foliage, hay, scraps, then dig down to the dirt in the middle of these, lay the eggs there; the true domestic "production" hen actually digs a deeper nest, winds the grass around, but still gets down to the dirt to lay the egg ... all of them shun nest boxes ... they poop in the nest boxes, lay on the ground !
  7. JackieK318

    JackieK318 Songster

    Apr 29, 2007
    Mine lay under the deck behind the trash can storage in an old tire the previous owners left, in the planter with ivy by the back door (my fave - door service!), and under the English Ivy in the front by the stoop. I've tried baskets, nest boxes, etc.

    The planter by the back door is interesting. Black Hen pulls the dead lily leaves and makes a nest, then covers it with leaves when she's finished. Orange Hen would lay in the same spot, but just run away.

    Red Hen lays under the ivy in the front. She often roosts in the cedar tree by her "spot". She moves her nest if she sees me collect the eggs, so I have to be sly. She doesn't have any material down, but the ivy drapes over the corner of the stoop, so it's like a cave.

    Rhody would hide her eggs with leaves, but just would lay in the middle of the tire on the dirt. I didn't toss the tire because I didn't want to ruin her 'thing'.

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