Cover for nesting boxes???

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by OliviaDeHav, Sep 14, 2010.

  1. OliviaDeHav

    OliviaDeHav Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just had a friend write, "you know to keep the nesting boxes dark right? I keep a black garbage bag over mine" I didn't know this.... I've not seen this on here, so now am trying to figure what to do to cover the boxes....
    Do you keep your boxes covered? How do they get in? I will get a picture of mine up here, but mine are not covered at all....

    I added the pictures so maybe I can get some ideas as to what to do to make their nesting boxes more "private"

    [​IMG]
    This is inside - we actually have two roosting bars now - you can see where the nesting boxes are here -

    [​IMG]
    This is the "outside" - we have it inside the woodshed to add extra insulation from rain, snow etc... for egg collection...
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2010
  2. Rooster Cogburn

    Rooster Cogburn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think it's just better if the nesting boxes are dark. Chickens and other birds want a safe place to lay so out of the way and dark feels safe to them. Mine are not covered but there tucked away in the corners of the coop and about two feet high.
     
  3. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Lots of people use upon top nesting boxes. It's a matter of what your chickens will use. I have some with an open front only, but some of the hens prefer to lay in a corner on the floor -- no top. One lays out in the open. It's not bad to cover them, might help if you are trying to encourage them to use the nests, but it's not necessary.
     
  4. OliviaDeHav

    OliviaDeHav Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:How do you cover them and have them know to use them?? They are 12 weeks old right now... when will they be ready to lay?? I have the nesting boxes blocked off so they would get use to using their roosting bars They have been roosting on them now for 3-5 weeks so should I open the boxes back up?
     
  5. OliviaDeHav

    OliviaDeHav Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:i added pictures and as you can see, mine are across from the window... a very large window...
     
  6. Keene's coop

    Keene's coop Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i just use a litter box and my grandparents just use old boxes. and they use them just fine.
     
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    You will find that we do a lot of different things with nest boxes and almost anything will work. Many use open top nests and others go as far as to put curtains on the openings to get them darker. Chickens tend to like darker more secure looking places to lay, but some seem to prefer to lay out in the open. Keeping them dark is not a requirement but sometimes it helps.

    I like to open the nest boxes at 16 weeks. It is possible that they will start laying that early, but unlikely. I want the nests open when they start to lay so they don't get into bad habits of laying somewhere I don't want them to lay. I also like to open them early enough so I can correct a problem if one develops. They might start nesting in them when they are opened up, even if they are used to roosting somewhere else. I have found out that my lip was not high enough to keep the nesting material and fake egg in when they went in to scratch around. I had time to raise the lip before they started scratching real eggs out.
     
  8. OliviaDeHav

    OliviaDeHav Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thanks for your insight [​IMG] does my lip on mine look high enough? true with hay or straw in them, it will raise them up! i hadn't thought of that....
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    With mine, five inches is about the right height. I've seen others recommend three inches, but mine scratched the nesting material (straw and wood shavings) and fake eggs out at that height.
     
  10. OliviaDeHav

    OliviaDeHav Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Fake eggs? Mine have not laid any eggs yet, and these are my first chickens... so why fake eggs? Ceramic ones? My friend who told me about covering the nesting boxes said one of hers is eating eggs and she is going to put in a fake egg - is that all they are used for?
     

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