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Five hens and lot of noise - will more nest boxes help?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mikecnorthwest, Aug 8, 2010.

  1. mikecnorthwest

    mikecnorthwest Songster

    Mar 27, 2009
    Vancouver, WA
    My Coop
    I have five hens who share two nest boxes. Over the last few weeks they've become much more vocal, to the point where I fear the neighbors might complain. I know it's normal to make noise before laying but I'm wondering if adding two more nest boxes might help. I'm thinking that perhaps they're feeling some stress when both nests are occupied.
  2. SurprisingWoman

    SurprisingWoman Songster

    May 27, 2009
    South Weber, UT
    You can try but I think your girls are just loud and proud! [​IMG]
  3. kitaye

    kitaye In the Brooder

    Jul 16, 2009
    South Lancaster
    We have 10 hens and three nest boxes. There is ALWAYS one box with no eggs in it and our girls loudly tell the whole neighbourhood they laid an egg. I don't think more boxes will help at all.
  4. Have 5 boxes for 22 hens...they use 3 of them...the largest is the fav...a Rubbermaid container on its side...in fact this morning there were 3 in it at one time and it is not uncommon for there to be 2 in it at once. [​IMG]

    One has sand in it...Ann-Margaret is the only one using it, one has Pine Shavings that are very thin...Goldie has kicked out most of them. The large had a mix of sawdust and pine shavings but everyone that uses this box kicks it all to the lip so it is very thin...so far so good...no broken eggs.
  5. fishermans wife

    fishermans wife Songster

    Sep 2, 2009
    Ventura County
    I agree with the above, they tend to favor one or two boxes and ignore the others. Mine will stand and scream at the one laying until she is done and gets out, even though there are several empty boxes to be had. My favorite is when one will lay her egg , then just sit there relaxing for awhile, ignoring the desperation of the screamer....JUST LIKE THE KIDS!!!! [​IMG]
  6. bragabit

    bragabit Songster

    Mar 26, 2009
    Southern Utah
    We have 12 nest boxes and about as many hens. They STILL insist that they all lay in one or two of the nest boxes. At times squishing two or three hens to a box. The chatter, sqawks and yelling can be heard in the house. So no, more nest boxes will not help [​IMG]
  7. constance

    constance Songster

    Oct 10, 2009
    I have found that sharing eggs with the neighbors helps to prevent their irritation from our noisy hens. This morning we had two hens in one box with one hen sitting on the other's head and starting to lay, and another hen down below in the run screaming. For what it is worth, however, the neighbors have never complained and mostly seem to enjoy the ladies.

    Good luck!
  8. woodmort

    woodmort Songster

    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Quote:The short answer, as you can see from what is written above, is "no". Just because they have more choices, doesn't mean they'll use them--or want them either.[​IMG]
  9. thegoldengirls

    thegoldengirls Songster

    Sep 12, 2009
    Central NY
    Ha! Mine make noise, before and after laying. I have 3 boxes for 9 girls, and the tend to use one the most.
    Yeah, they are loud, but so are the neighbors' dogs. Tit for tat...lol! [​IMG]
    And no one has complained... but then, I don't live in town either.

    If you offer them some eggs, they may be more tolerant.
  10. mikecnorthwest

    mikecnorthwest Songster

    Mar 27, 2009
    Vancouver, WA
    My Coop
    Thanks guys. I talked to one neighbor who is closest to the coop and he said the hens have never bothered them. He's pretty direct so I think he would have told me if they were. I'll chill for a while and see if I get any complaints.

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