Combination Nest and Toilet?!?


Will Shut Up for Chocolate
11 Years
May 7, 2008
Frozen Lake, MN
I have just successfully (or so I thought) combined our 3 mature chickens with our teenagers in the adult coop and run.

I checked on them just before dark Monday night and most of them were on the roost - getting along just fine, thank you very much.

Then I saw a few of them hanging out in front of the nest boxes, and some actually sitting in the nest boxes.

"How cute" I thought. Didn't think anything more about it.

Then I came down to let them out on Monday afternoon,and checked inside the coop - The teengers aparently think the nestboxes are toilets, because they had pooped in a few of them. What the heck?!?

How do I address this behavior? Is it because the teenagers aren't of egg-laying age yet?

I don't want the adult chickens to be put off laying in the boxes because of this.

I'm not sure that's it, Dixie. I've seen them all on the roost.

But I added an extra row of nest boxes on top of the existing ones in prep for them getting ready to lay sometime in November. I did that on Saturday, so I suppose they saw that as an opportunity. The poop was in the new nestboxes. Not sure how I would break them of this.

I thought this issue had come up before, but when I tried to do a search on it, I came up with nothing.

There is one problem where the solution is to put a partial or full drape over the opening of the nestbox. But is that a solution to egg-eating?

Hmm..... if I find anything, I'll post it here.
My experience has been with all animals except the horse that they will poop where ever and when ever.

Might be something you have to get used to.
I tried to stop mine from doing this by blocking off their nests box for 3 weeks. When I took off the cover they were back in them in 2 nights.

Now they poop in one box and lay in the other. So, I don't know if they can be broke form this dirty
that was my post and blocking off the nests didn't work for very long and I also went out there at night to make sure they weren't in the box, but I gave that up after 4 or 5 nights.
Just have to live with it I guess.
They will poop all night in the nest box, as they do on the roost, so it is very likely you have one or more sleeping in there. You can go out in the late evening and move the culprit to the roost, but it seems to make no difference. I have a RIR that is on the roost in the evening but by 10:00 is in the nest and no amount of moving her back seems to work. Luckily, we get very few eggs in that box; most of the hens lay in the other bottom box and nobody lays in the upper boxes.

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