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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by redstar14, Aug 13, 2013.
Does putting a golfball or fake egg in your chickens nest encourage them to lay eggs
I don't know that it encourages them to lay as much as it does where to lay. I think they lay when Mother Nature says.
I agree with redsoxs, I've just read that it helps them know where to lay. Some people use Easter eggs so that's what I'm trying right now, I'm using two per box and picked out the lightest colors I could find in our decoration stash. It's not working lol I've checked 5 times today and every time the eggs have been thrown all over the nesting box. I'm going to go golf ball hunting tomorrow near a golf course
Lol thanks mine haven't started yet because they were recently moved but best of luck to you
Welcome to BYC! Glad you joined us!
Welcome to BYC! Happy you joined!
The golf balls are more to plant the idea in their little chicken brains, that eggs go in the nest. As far as brains go, snakes are dumb enough to swallow golf balls too when they are trying to rob eggs from a nest. Serves them right. Broody hens however, will try to hatch golf balls, rocks, or just air but, that is hormones talking not brains. so your answer is, it couldn't hurt to try.
Golf balls work for many hens, but the smarter hens in my flock took offense at having golf balls in the nest and would roll it out or lay elsewhere. I made up some plaster eggs which they liked. Even my sillier hens didn't like the golf ball.
I believe the reason is that hollow plastic balls or golf balls don't conduct heat anything like an egg does, and the heat conduction is one way a hen can tell if eggs are rotting. Bad eggs resist warming up, and cool down much faster than good eggs. So the more instinctive hens refuse bad eggs and hollow balls and golf balls, but the less intelligent ones won't mind. The less instinctive hens are those that sit on bad eggs till they burst, too, a smarter hen won't do that.
Seeing an egg does not compel a hen's system to begin manufacturing eggs, that's a biological cyclic occurrence which happens naturally. If her body is ready to lay and she sees an egg-like thing in the nest, it may make her think it's her egg and she may add to it. But very instinctive hens may take offense at a nest being used by other hens, however such levels of instinct are almost entirely absent from domestic stock. I would guess you won't have an issue with using a golf ball as a 'nest egg' to entice them to put their eggs in that nest. Smarter hens take offense at their nest being totally emptied every day and will lay in a more safe location, so having permanent nest eggs is useful. I recall many of my hens going up to the nest to lay, seeing I've collected the eggs, and standing there screaming their heads off that a predator has raided their clutch.