Do I need a top for nesting boxes??

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Tracerkid, Mar 3, 2015.

  1. Tracerkid

    Tracerkid In the Brooder

    Mar 3, 2015
    I am very new to this. We are going to convert a plastic playhouse for a coop. My question is can I put nesting boxes inside or do they have to extend outside one of the windows with a top on it. All the pics I've seen have the nesting boxes extended outside the coop. I don't want to do this if I don't have to. I have very limited carpentry skills :)

  2. dheltzel

    dheltzel Crowing

    Nov 30, 2013
    Pottstown, PA
    I sometimes use a cardboard box or plastic tote without the lid. The reason to extend them outside the coop is purely to save space and make it convenient to collect the eggs. Seems like it makes it a lot colder in those nests in the winter, and we have problems with frozen eggs already, that would freeze most of them.

    A top can be nice, to help keep the poop out because they may roost on the nestbox. I like to put my nestboxes under the poop boards to reduce the mess. Doesn't always work, the youngsters often roost in the boxes.
  3. Tracerkid

    Tracerkid In the Brooder

    Mar 3, 2015
    Roost in the nesting boxes huh?? Well looks like I have to do some re-planning...LOL
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    We have all kinds of nests, inside and outside the coop, covered or uncovered. A lot of that is personal preference but in a small coop there may be some real solid reasons for a certain kind. If space is tight, hanging a nest outside can help with space and make them easier to collect. You need to position the roosts so they are not pooping in the food, water, or nests when on the roosts. Chickens poop a lot when roosting.

    You don’t want them sleeping in the nests because they poop a lot. Who wants poopy eggs? The simplistic answer is to make the roosts higher than anything you don’t want them sleeping in or on, like the nests. Chickens instinctively like to sleep on the highest spot available. Even with plenty of roost space up high, that doesn’t always work, but it should be your starting point.

    In large coops where you can easily position things so they aren’t pooping in things, lots of people use open nests. Dad did and never had a problem. A popular nest on this forum is a cardboard box or cat litter pan with bedding in it sitting in a corner of the coop though plenty of other people get a lot more creative. We can build some complicated things or maybe repurpose a piece of furniture like a bookcase or chest of drawers. I saw a photo on here where someone used a kitchen sink. People care about this stuff a lot more than the chickens do.
  5. trooper

    trooper Songster

    Apr 26, 2010
    I have both inside and outside. The outside does make more space available. It doesn't take a lot of carpentry skills to move them outside. I have seen where different things such as baskets, bowls, or anything that can hold hens secure, placed n various places in the coop. You really don't need a lot of nesting boxes. I have 6 regular size nesting boxes and 2 large ones and they don't use them all. As a matter of fact they usually pick a few and fight over who gets to use it first
  6. Tracerkid

    Tracerkid In the Brooder

    Mar 3, 2015
    I really appreciate all this advice :) When I say I am a newbe I'm not kidding. So glad I found this site. Hopefully in a few years I can be on here giving advice. Thanks Everyone.

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