First egg, laid off the roost bar

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by lizch, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. lizch

    lizch Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 29, 2011
    I've searched the forum and found links to the problem of roosting in the nest boxes, but I have the opposite problem: the first egg from my 21 week old flock was laid while the hen was sitting on the roost. It fell 2 feet and smashed on the poop board below.

    I'd noticed her creating a nest in a corner of the coop for a couple of days and saw her sitting in it a couple of times. I was sure she'd lay there. But no. (I also have four nest boxes, which is where I'd like them to lay of course, but at this point I'll settle for "anywhere on the ground"!)

    Today I bought two fake eggs and put them in one nest box.

    Any other suggestions? Will they keep laying on the roost once they've started?
  2. WhySayWhat

    WhySayWhat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 5, 2010
    My BR started laying about 2 weeks ago, her first 2 eggs were off the roost! The next 2 were on the roof of the coop (it's flat), and since blocking off the roof access, she has taken to laying in the hardware covered rafters of the coop! I have swapped out the nest box I have in the coop 3 times now and she still prefers to lay on the hardware cloth...go figure!

    I just hope the other 2 girls (I hope) that I have don't follow her lead!

    Good luck getting yours to lay where you want them to!
  3. lsualumna

    lsualumna Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 28, 2011
    I'm new to the chicken raising scene, but this is similar to what happened with my first girl who layed an egg. I found out that my favorite girl Liz was laying last Saturday by accident. Long story, but the gist of it is that when I went in to give the coop a thorough cleaning I found that she had laid a couple of eggs (one was on Friday and the other was on a Saturday) in the corner of the coop on the floor. She came back into the coop and I picked her up and put her in a nest. She hunkered down, got nice and cozy, and picked around at the straw a little. I also put a couple of the other girls who were not laying yet in the other two nests just so they could get an idea of how nice the nests were. Then they left the coop to go back outside.

    I held my breath thinking that this was going to take some training or I would have to buy fake eggs. However, last Sunday morning when I went to check on my girl laying eggs, low and behold, there was an egg in the middle nest. Wow! I thought, that was fast learning! Haven't had a problem since then and now my second girl, Emma started laying this past Friday and they share one nest.

    I have also heard about the ceramic eggs in the nest, but I got lucky with my smart girls. Chickens are smart and can learn new things. Someone out there may be closer to my age (45) or older and can remember a time when they used to have chickens at various places (like stores, etc.) where they used to play a guitar or piano to get a treat. In any case, you can probably teach her that her nest is a comfy place to be. Just like teaching a dog, I would think consistancy is needed.

    Good luck!
  4. tarragon

    tarragon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 3, 2011
    Bothell, WA
    Quote:My first girl laid her first eggs in the nest right where she was supposed to. Her sister Ginny usually accompanies her when she lays. Now Ginny has laid twice-but not in the nest box. She lays them in a corner of the run and both times the egg has gotten cracked. Yesterday the first girl, Johnny, laid an egg where Ginny had been. Grrrr. Sounds like a few of us are in the same boat! At least mine aren't on the roof. [​IMG]
  5. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    It is a learned skill, of sorts. I think perhaps the first ones catch them off guard and they don't quite know what those sensations of passing an egg are all about. They catch on, with maturity. A little patience and they'll "get it".
  6. lizch

    lizch Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 29, 2011
    Thanks...nice to have the reassurance that this tends to be a short-lived problem.

    Can't wait for the first edible egg!
  7. lizch

    lizch Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 29, 2011
    Quick update.

    It really was a very short-lived problem. Monday and Tuesday each revealed one egg, laid on the ground in a little hollow she made in the bedding. We now need to try to convince her into the nest boxes, but I'm happy with this for the time being. Tiniest eggs I've ever seen, but I gather they lay bigger and bigger eggs with time.

    Pretty sure it's one of the two RIRs that laid. Three of the BAs are looking close too...amazing to think we'll probably be seeing 6 eggs a day by the end of the month. Love my chickens!
  8. duckinnut

    duckinnut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 18, 2010
    Marshfield, Ma.
    Put a couple of golfballs or fake eggs in the nest box so they get the idea. You will learn that they all seem to lay in 1/2 boxes. They will see them and think that this must be a good spot to lay. 9 of mine lay in 2 boxes and 1 that lays in one particular box.

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