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How to find a hidden nest....HELP!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by LukeandAli, Jan 16, 2012.

  1. LukeandAli

    LukeandAli Chirping

    Nov 28, 2011
    Carver, Oregon
    So, DH and I are pretty certain that our Ameracauna's almost-daily escapes from the run are to hide her eggs (she even leaves at about the same time every day and comes back about the same time). She seemed interested in the nesting boxes, but, she refuses to lay in the coop. Today, I have the day off, so, I've been looking out the window about every 5 minutes (getting reeeeally tired of that), but, no luck so far. I'd like to figure out where she's laying so that I don't have to drag my 8 month pregnant self out there and try to chase down eggs. I don't mind her laying outside the coop; I just want to know where to go to collect the eggs.

    Does anyone have any advice on how to find a hidden nest? DH and I have looked in what we thought would be likely places, but, we haven't seen any nest or eggs yet.


  2. Sorry your question didn't get the help it deserves...

    Your best bet is to simply follow her (at a discreet distance) to the nest.

    Another option is to keep her confined in the coop until she does lay her egg(s) there. It may take a few days (or a week) for her to "learn" where to lay, but they WILL get the idea.

    Mine were awful about not laying in the nest so I kept them confined until they had laid their eggs had been laid THEN let them out. Surprisingly they started laying pretty early once they associated egg laying with freedom!

    Good luck!
  3. aoxa

    aoxa Crowing

    Yes, I would say take a day and just watch her discretely. That's how I always discover who is laying what, but have never had to find a hidden nest.
  4. That`s about it, watch where they go. Should be easier if she has a schedule. Maybe, like today, she won`t lay every day, as they seldom do, but following them is the key. As mentioned, don`t let her get the idea that you are following, or that you know where the nest is. Quite a task for an 8 month pregnant gal. Good luck........Pop
  5. aoxa

    aoxa Crowing

    They never do it when you want them to :barnie
  6. ambrosia

    ambrosia Songster

    Oct 21, 2011
    I have snow, so I follow the chicken tracks... lol
  7. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Songster

    Oct 31, 2008
    Sometime in the Spring we will find the leghorn nest with a dozen eggs in it that the darn bird hid on us before the hawk got her.
    With our luck, we'll probably smell it first.

  8. they'reHISchickens lol! too true... that's about how it goes around here as well! Good luck finding them BEFORE the eggs get broken!
  9. Smiles-N-Sunshine

    Smiles-N-Sunshine Songster

    Oct 19, 2008
    Palominas, Arizona
    We have stealth nests from time to time too. (Ducks are more prone to hiding and burying their eggs than chickens are.)

    You can follow your hen around all day, but I prefer to listen for the "egg song", when they announce to the universe how proud they are for laying it. In my experience, once you take down a stealth nest, the hen gives up and lays with her sisters. I wouldn't recommend eating these eggs, but I've incubated them a few times and got decent results.

    And, hey - aren't Easter egg hunts fun??? [​IMG]


    Last edited: Jan 19, 2012
  10. LukeandAli

    LukeandAli Chirping

    Nov 28, 2011
    Carver, Oregon
    Thank you for the help! We moved the water dispenser (aka "escape route") away from the fence and she's stayed in since then. She hasn't started laying in the coop for us yet, but, she was checking out the nesting boxes the other day and inspecting the eggs in them. Maybe she's getting the idea....?

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