How Many Nest Boxes?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by FyreFly, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. FyreFly

    FyreFly Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 2, 2011
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    I have been looking over coop plans and noticed that they have space for more hens than they do nest boxes. For example, the plan will say that it houses 5 hens but allows for 1 or 2 nest boxes. Do hens need one box per bird or will they share?
     
  2. Chemguy

    Chemguy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've always heard that 4 hens/1 nest box is a good ratio.
     
  3. Knock Kneed Hen

    Knock Kneed Hen California Dream'in Chickens

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    Yes, they tend to pile into the same nest boxes or line up and wait their turn!! I have 4 nest boxes and 17 hens. There's usually one box unused at all times.
     
  4. bryan99705

    bryan99705 Chillin' With My Peeps

    ! to 2 boxes is right on for 5 birds. They will figure out which one they like and ignore the other one
     
  5. savingpurple

    savingpurple Chillin' With My Peeps

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    may I ask a question? Are too many nest boxes a deterent to laying? We build before we knew chickens well.....hind sight is wonderful, but we over killed for sure. Will that matter?
     
  6. Chemguy

    Chemguy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I doubt that too many boxes would be a big problem, but others with more experience can correct me. At the very least you'll have to look through a lot of boxes in order to find the occasional egg. Maybe you could cover a few of them up, or convert them into storage.
     
  7. animalpro24

    animalpro24 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think for 5 hens, 2 or 3 would be great.
     
  8. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Quote:Actually, I think they like having some choice, even though they seem to argue over their favorites. Mine definitely like having different types -- they change their favorites around periodically. Right now they are ignoring the open top one; 6 months ago I would find 3 or 4 eggs in it.

    Sure would be easy to convert many styles of nest boxes into a cabinet or two for storage!
     
  9. savingpurple

    savingpurple Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thanks....I may just see what happens when they start laying! Still waiting...tapping foot.[​IMG] almost 16/17 weeks
     

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