Chickens were digging a hole, and laying on top of it. What is this? Was it nesting for egg laying?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by matiportnoy, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. matiportnoy

    matiportnoy Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 18, 2015
    Today, I let my chickens free range for a couple of hours while I watched over them. During this time, they went into a shaded/ cozy area of bushes and started to dig a hole. They ¨sat¨ in it and kept digging. Their feathers were spiky and their beaks were open. They were also making a few noises. They did this for about 1 hour. I thought they were going to lay an egg. However, at one point they got up, and just started to walk around again. I had never seen them do this. What was it?
     
  2. gachickenchick

    gachickenchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 10, 2014
    Hi there! It sounds like they may have been taking a dust bath! It looks a little strange when you see it for the first time. Were they digging and kicking the dirt into their feathers?
     
  3. matiportnoy

    matiportnoy Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 18, 2015
    Yes! That is exactly what they were doing. So I guess this has nothing to do with egg laying?
     
  4. gachickenchick

    gachickenchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 10, 2014
    No, sorry - not in my case! They will find a spot that they like to bathe in regularly. This is a good thing and they need to do this to clean themselves. How old are your hens?
     
  5. matiportnoy

    matiportnoy Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 18, 2015
    Well I only got them about 3 days ago. The previous owner told me they were about 1-1.5 years old. But she didn't seem to be sure...
     
  6. gachickenchick

    gachickenchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 10, 2014
    I don't know where you are located, but some chickens don't lay as much in the winter, especially if it's really cold! Maybe they are also getting used to their new environment....I wish the best of luck to you! Hopefully your girls will be blessing you with some yummy eggs very soon! [​IMG]
     
  7. matiportnoy

    matiportnoy Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 18, 2015
    I am located in Puerto Rico. So cold weather is not really a concern for me. I hope so too! Thanks for all your help!! :)
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. gachickenchick

    gachickenchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 10, 2014
    You are very welcome!
     
  9. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Many of us here are envious of your balmy climate. Your chickens sure have it made!

    Have you provided a nest for your new hens? A coop? If you want to eat the eggs they lay, they will most probably hide them in the bushes where you will never find them, so you'd do well to give them a nice, cozy, safe, dark, private place to lay. Most people have a coop for their hens to live in and they coop them up for a few days after bringing them home so they will get used to living there and lay their eggs in the coop.

    Also, it's normal for hens to not lay eggs right after moving to a new place. It might take up to two weeks for them to get comfortable enough to start laying.
     
  10. matiportnoy

    matiportnoy Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 18, 2015
    Yes! The climate is great here! :)
    I did make them a coop and a run as well. They go in the coop sometimes during the day, but sleep out in the run. Also, whenever I let them free range I am watching them. I am just so excited to get eggs!! I always check the coop an run for eggs. Here is a photo:[​IMG]
     

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