Chickens don't lay eggs in trees, do they?

denim deb

9 Years
Sep 15, 2010
I got permission from the farm owner where I have my horses to get some chickens and keep them out at the farm. She used to have an emu which died, so she said I could use that pen. Right now, there's an old calf house in there for shelter. I haven't had the time to make a regular coop, but will be doing so b4 winter. So, in January, I got 4 chicks-guaranteed EE hens, Rosie, Angel, Wanda, and Penny. Rosie turned out to be Ralph,
so I figured I'd be able to raise some chicks. Another friend got 2 BR, which were in w/my chickens until she got an area set up for them. Both of hers turned out to be pullets.

When the girls first started to lay, they were doing so in the house. Then, they decided that they'd rather lay outside. This other person was sure her one pullet was broody, so she decided that she was going to try and get some chicks. Well, it didn't work. Neither of her girls would stay on the "nest", but at times I'd see one of my girls setting. They'd never stay long, sometimes they'd lay and egg, sometimes not.

About the time she finally got an area set up to move her girls, she decided they weren't broody, and that the eggs were no good. So, the eggs were taken out. And, to the best of my knowledge, none of my girls has laid an egg since-unless they have a hidden nest. (They're free ranging for now. I plan on putting a top on the pen, just haven't had time.

Today, I was in w/my chickens giving them fresh water. There's an oak tree in there that they like to roost in. And, about 6 feet up, I saw an egg. It was definitely from one of my girls since it was green. But, it was hung up on a twig, so the shell was broke. There was nothing inside. So now I'm really curious. Did one of my girls lay an egg while roosting, and if not, how in the world did the egg get in the tree?
I agree with melodie_a, a predator could well have taken it up there to eat.

But, it IS possible one of your chickens laid an egg while roosting. It's unusual, but I've seen that happen before.
Sounds like your girls are hiding a nest somewhere. I do agree with the predator idea. I have also had a few of my hens lay an egg while roosting. Does not happen often, but I have two girls who like to roost on my deck and I have found an egg on the railing in the middle of the night and I know it was not there before dark. Look around the property, but you have to be very observant. Chickens can be masters at hiding their nests.
I agree that a predator took the egg - it was broken with nothing inside - because it ate it. Could have been a squirrel.
I vote squirrel... those buggers make off with my eggs all the time.
Not necessarily. I don't know how long it was there, it could have been one day, or a few days and I just hadn't noticed it b4. Thing is, we've had several inches of rain lately, so it could have all just been washed out.

I'm not sure about a squirrel though. You don't see them around here. The farm owner has several dogs and they kill the squirrels that come in the yard. In order to get to this tree, they'd either have to come past all the dogs, or go thru several feet of open pasture. I did wonder about a crow since I'm really seeing and hearing a lot of fish crows now.
The last 2 mornings I've had found an egg under the roosting girls (I think it has been the same RIR -"Chaka"). I've got sand on the coop floor and both times the egg was crack-free...lucky me. I vote for the hens laying in the tree - I think a crow would take it further away and you'd find shell pieces everywhere.

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