Encouraging use of nest box


9 Years
Aug 20, 2010
Now that I know I am close to getting my first egg (evidenced by reddened comb and wattles and squatting), is there anything I need to do to encourage her to lay the eggs in the box? I have 2 boxes for 4 chickens inside the coop. I put 3 golf balls in each. Should I only have one in each?

Also, they like to spend their day in the garden just hanging out. They go all over the whole yard and sometimes go back into their coop, but they are frequently napping in the garden or looking for bugs in there. They are allowed the whole yard except the porch and veggie garden, but the yard is small so it's not like they have to travel far to get back to the coop...like 50ft. Is there anything I should do to ensure she lays in the box? Should I put one box in the yard and one in the coop? they are rubbermaid bins so they have a lid and just an opening in the front.

Thanks. I'm so excited!!!

Im no expert, but Im guessing they will lay where they are comfortable and the appropriate nesting boxes are. They know where home is (The coop) and will lay there when they are ready, good luck!
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Mine just started laying this week....and I have four eggs so far...thankyouverymuch!!

I worried also about if they would lay in a nest. I looked at the floor in the coop and behind the door everytime I went in for several weeks. Then this week the first one laid an egg. Right there in one of the nest boxes was the prettiest little tiny egg!

But they are right....they will lay where they are comfortable. I was worried they would not use ours because they are commercial next boxes...but they did! Also worried they would not fit in there...but they did. Can't imagine a broody sitting on a nest in one however!
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Well, I think ONE golf ball per nest is fine, or two at most. Save those extras for when the originals magically disappear. (Chickens can move them around. It's interesting to see where they end up.)
I wouldn't move the nesting box's into the yard . Leave it in the coop because that's where you want the eggs. One of mine just started laying & so far she has used the nesting box's in the coop.
Oh good thanks. I think they have been in the nests because I saw some feathers in there. I will take out a couple balls and cross my fingers.

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