Hen now layer from the roost

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Tenneesse, Oct 20, 2014.

  1. Tenneesse

    Tenneesse Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 24, 2010
    Woodbury, Middle Tn
    I currently have only 2 hens due to a preying Bobcat (no longer as of 2 days ago) and I have no longer a rooster because of the predator. My birds all range. Recently one of the 2 has begun laying very early almost sunrise and does so before leaving her roost. The eggs survive the fall until tow day ago I noticed the egg had a hole maybe from the fall maybe from the bird herself. this morning it was pretty obvious she is probably starting to eat her egg.

    Whats going on. Im going to put new fresh straw in their barrels hoping to invite her to return to the nest to lay but. the second bird was only introduced yesterday and she also layed from her roost.

    What am I doing wrong. My Coochins layed in their nest never ate their eggs before they were killed.

    The older girl is a Rhode Island Red 10 months old and the new girl is a Wyanndotte about the same age and she is too new to have determined what her habits are going to be but I do know she layed from her roost this morning before 7:30 am and it was broken.

    I have a second coop inside the first where she is tonight it will keep her separted from the Red and it also has its own nesting box Im hoping she will take a liking to even if she doesnt lay in the box her roost is close to the floor. The older girl wasn't very cordial at first but they seem to have worked it out through out the day mostly but they wont have access to each until I open the smaller coop in the morning.

    Im going to the coop very early in the morning and hopefully i'll be there before the older bird lays and see how early early she is laying and maybe get the egg before she does. I have made a net to catch
    it. This morning I think she actually broke in on the net (pecked it open)
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG] The Red is the one acting strangely, laying from her roost and what appears to be pecking her egg.
    [​IMG]The coop is way in the back under the trees you almost cant see it beyond the pump house. its 8 x 12 and I have a small section I used for broodies and also a smaller coop that I have the Wyanndotte in tonight. Its in the broody section that the Red is roosting and dropping her egg.
    Its been a stressful day with the new girl meeting the Red, egg laying, pecking order stuff and the likes of.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2014
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Chickens will eat a broken egg. It doesn't necessarily mean they are "egg eaters" in the sense of breaking the egg open in order to eat it. I don't know that anyone knows what causes a flock to become egg eaters, but I do know some old time chicken keepers routinely throw an undesirable eggs down on the floor for the chickens to eat, and say that this haas not caused the flock to become egg eaters. Maybe it has to do with their dietary needs when it does happen.

    Also, your flock is bound to feel stressed and maybe act strangely after a predator attack. It can take them a while to settle down again. I hope things return to normal for you soon.
     
  3. Tenneesse

    Tenneesse Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 24, 2010
    Woodbury, Middle Tn
    i guess Im most curious why the girls are laying so early, before they leave the roost and before sunrise. This may have to do with the stress.
     
  4. KGreene

    KGreene Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 23, 2014
    I recently had this same issue with a hen who started laying in the nesting boxes and after a month or so began laying from the roost. I actually ended up after several attempts, getting to the coop before she laid (4:45a.m.). I ran all the birds off the roost and made it inaccessible (forcing her to lay somewhere else). Luckily, it was back in the nesting boxes. I only had to do this once, and she's been consistently laying in the boxes again for about a week now and, she's also laying later in the morning (7:00-8:00).
     
  5. Tenneesse

    Tenneesse Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 24, 2010
    Woodbury, Middle Tn
    What do they say about great minds!!! I went to the coop yesterday morning early and sat on my stool and waited to see what she was going to do. I had put up a net just in case and at 6:45 she laid her eggs and I caught it in the net. My other hen was contained in an inner coop enclosure and I check and she laid in her nest. I have only had her for 2 days now. This morning I went in again at about 6:15 and the roosting hen had not laid then at 7:30 she came off the roost went right into her nesting barrel and I was determined I woudn't move until both girls came off the nests and at 9:15 both came out and there was an egg in each nest. I was unable to tell at what time they laid, no song no indication of either of having laid by sound. tomorrow I will do the same thing to see what happens. I like the idea of your making them get up and find a nest that suits them. if they don't come around on their own. I'll be watching closely thanks for that great bit of insight. Tom
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2014
  6. KGreene

    KGreene Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 23, 2014
    It must be a Tennessee thing! LOL... All of my family on my dads side are from Tennessee.
     

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