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If you have multiple nest boxes, do they all lay in one box?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by debid, Dec 22, 2011.

  1. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    I've noticed that my chickens prefer to lay their eggs next to another egg. They don't seem to care which box or whether it's a real egg or a dummy in the nest. I have four nest boxes and two dummy eggs that I've been moving around. It's hilarious because wherever the dummy eggs are is where the real eggs will be. I often find that they've all laid in the same nest and I can manipulate which one by where I place the dummy eggs.
     
  2. stilldeb

    stilldeb Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine all like to lay mostly in one box, too - unless it's occupied and they just can't 'wait'. One house has six nesting boxes in it, and most of the eggs will all be in one box. But mine like to share when they are broody, too, and will all pile in a nesting box together and sit on top of each other.
     
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    There is ALWAYS a favorite nesting box. And of course, it's also the one the broodies want. I do have a couple of girls that prefer the bottom nest boxes, but it might just be that they are too heavy to get to the top ones. [​IMG]
     
  4. ozark_chickies

    ozark_chickies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, for some reason my chickens all choose to lay in the same nests. Went out yesterday, and had three hens crammed in the same box, even though the one right next to it was empty [​IMG] .
     
  5. Mattemma

    Mattemma Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes,mine would crawl in next to others and nudge them out!

    So many eggs in one box I have to check often so none get cracked.
     
  6. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    Well, if you're interested, putting the dummy eggs into two different nest boxes has resulted in a second pullet not waiting for her turn in the popular nest -- she just puts her egg next to the second dummy egg.

    I'd love it if someone else tried this to see if their birds stopped using only one box by putting dummy eggs into more than one box.
     
  7. newchick13

    newchick13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 6 nesting boxes, and I put 3 dummy eggs in one box and 3 dummy eggs in another. The girls lay their eggs in either of the two boxes that had the dummies. I've since taken out the dummies, but the girls still lay in the same 2 boxes only.
     
  8. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:That's what I'm saying, though. Put a dummy egg in a different box and see if they don't change their minds. [​IMG]
     
  9. brownysfp

    brownysfp Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Four boxes, two used. Only if there's no way a hen can hang is the third one used. I've seen three crammed side by side in a box with a perfectly empty and identical box right next to them. I split them up, two in the woodshed, two in the toolshed: one used in each. Go figure...
     
  10. ozark_chickies

    ozark_chickies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I have six fake eggs placed randomly though the nest boxes, and the favorite box has none. I have noticed that my hens like the corner boxes better than the middle ones, and my most popular nest is in the darkest corner of the hen house.
     

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