Found a pile of eggs.. outside...

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by crayon, Mar 21, 2012.

  1. crayon

    crayon Songster

    Jun 7, 2011
    Hillman Michigan
    So, my girls came in screaming about an egg under a branch. I go out and we see there is a bunch of eggs (like 7) and the hens are taking turns setting on them... But not at night. It has been low 80's during the day, but at night- hum... very cold and they are all cooped up..

    So what do we do? Just let them sit on them and take turns? I am guessing the night temps are too low to hatch anything.. am I right?

    I want some to go broody- and it looks like they are wanting to take turns and do this... But they are totally free rangers- any suggestions would be helpful!

  2. sparkles2307

    sparkles2307 Terd of Hurtles

    Oct 23, 2008
    Northwestern Minnesota
    The eggs probably wont hatch if they are being left cold at night. But you could try moving some into a nest box and seeing who wants to set.
  3. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Songster

    Dec 15, 2011
    SE Pa.
    What you are seeing is the piling in effect. That's where one hen lays in a nest and the others see an egg there and decide that is a good place to lay. They will wait in line to lay in that nest, taking turns, or sometimes push and pile in that nest to lay. If one of them is broody she will not leave the nest even come night fall.
  4. krobin04

    krobin04 In the Brooder

    Jun 2, 2010
    Lincoln County
    It is frustrating for me, my girls have ample nesting boxes and yet they line up to lay in 1the specific box. Im guessing it is warmed up and has already been smooshed about into that perfect bowl shape?
  5. peepmommy

    peepmommy Songster

    Feb 15, 2012
    Lock them up completely for 1-2 weeks to retrain to the coop. I just went through this. You don't want to come across a hidden nest of 90 eggs. It's no biggie! Lockem up, then after a little, let them out. You may have to do this from time to time. When you see your egg numbers dropping, they probably have a hidden nest.
  6. SarahKate

    SarahKate In the Brooder

    Jun 30, 2011
    Rockvale, TN
    I agree with peepmommy. You need to keep them locked up in their coop and run and "retrain" them to lay in their boxes inside. This same thing happened to me last month and it was beyond frustrating. Ours free range all day, and then are locked in the coop at night. I kept them in their coop and run for a week and I *think* it solved the problem we were having of them laying outside somewhere. (I never found the nest, but knew they must have been laying in the woods because we weren't getting eggs for days!)

    If you want one to go broody, why don't you move those eggs from outside into one of your nesting boxes inside? Maybe one will be inclined to sit on them!

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