Coop & nest boxes not accessible to free range.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Omah09, Mar 14, 2012.

  1. Omah09

    Omah09 Out Of The Brooder

    I have 4 chickens and a secure coop with a small run on one side of the patio. Out in the yard I have a bigger area that is only secure during the day. When they're in the day area and want to lay, they pace back and forth by the gate till I let them back into the coop and nest boxes. If I added just a couple nest boxes to the day area would it confuse them? Would they use them? If they use them, would they still use the nest boxes in the coop? Anybody else end up in this situation?
     
  2. devora

    devora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Can you just leave the gate open while they range?
     
  3. the1much

    the1much Currently Birdless Hippy

    start moving their boxes round and they may jus not use em at all. i would leave a way for them to go in their coop wheneva,,its jus not a nesting or sleeping place,,its also their place for feeling safe..
     
  4. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    What the1much said. I only feed in the coop, so they have to be able to go in and out all day, even the ones that are not laying (young pullets and roosters).

    It's their home, not just a place to sleep, eat or lay eggs. They often settle on roosts in the coop during the day, or mess about in the shavings, etc.

    So I would find a way to allow them free access to the coop.
     
  5. the1much

    the1much Currently Birdless Hippy

    i noticed that,,on the roostin durin day,,,, ALL my birds took a siesta in aftanoon. popcorn would crow its time for nappy,,then wake em all up an hour or so later..
     
  6. Omah09

    Omah09 Out Of The Brooder

    The problem is I can't let them go back & forth safely. They won't be protected from hawks, our biggest daytime predators. They are happy in the day area other than when they have to lay.
     
  7. the1much

    the1much Currently Birdless Hippy

    lol,, then ya got no choice then to do it the way you are. could you make small doghouse for them to lay in,, they'll even line up n wait their turn to go in and lay lol
     
  8. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Then what you have isn't a problem, it's a situation. Problems have solutions, situations just exist. If you cannot create a covered area, tunnel, chute, or other route for them, and the layers' pacing back and forth bothers you, you might consider leaving them in the coop until later in the day, after most or all of them have laid their eggs. However, eggs take about 26 hours to be "built" so the hens will lay later and later on successive days until it's too late to lay that day, then they start per again early the next day they would normally lay. So you might be keeping them inside all the time. :confused:
     
  9. Omah09

    Omah09 Out Of The Brooder

    I may have to come up with a tunnel or bridge for them. Does it hurt them to hold the egg in for a couple extra hours?
     
  10. the1much

    the1much Currently Birdless Hippy

    they wont hold it lol,,,if its time then out it will come,,right there on the ground lol
     

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