So we have a weird situation. Our dog chewed through the poultry fence, so the chickens are VERY free range, wandering much of our 3 acres most of the day on warmer days. We got Sugar the Super Dog a doghouse inside the chicken yard, but she is a pasture dog and will not use it. So 2 chickens have taken to laying in the pellet bedding in the doghouse. Sugar will often steal those eggs, but since she isn't using the doghouse, we're going to sell it once it's warm enough to get out there and clear it out. So, the next issue is we have 2 community nest boxes, which the chickens are very comfortable using, and have been for 4 months now. I lined them with straw at first, but they kicked it all out. And after they did this ten times, I just left them unlined. No eggs ever broke, so oh well, right? Well, as the pellet bedding has broken down and become more saw-dust-y, they have begun hollowing out little dips like nests on the floor of the coop--3 or 4 of them sometimes, right in the middle of everything--and laying eggs there. This has been going on for about a week and a half, and after seeing it for a few days, I put fresh pellets in the nest boxes, but only found one or two eggs there, with the rest in the coop. I HATE walking into the coop for eggs, and I DO NOT want this to be the new fashion. Just for information's sake, there are 22 chickens, and the coop is 8X12, with deep litter that is probably about 8" deep right now. They don't have food or water in the coop, but they have free access in and out of it, and about 24' of roost space way above the nest boxes. The nest boxes are 28" across, there are 2 of them, and like i said, they always laid there before, until recently. The only change in their situation is that they suddenly got bold and started to roam the whole property at about the same time they started to quit using the nest boxes, but I don't know what that has to do with it. Weird little brainless critters, huh!!