I am new at keeping backyard chickens -- and really enjoying them! I have 4 hens, raised from juveniles, named after the Golden Girls. Two are about 23 weeks old (NH Red and Salmon Faverolles) and 2 are about 18 weeks old (Black Australorp and Easter Egger). The girls have a nice coop-house with 2 nest boxes, inside a converted dog run. No free-ranging allowed; there are many predators in our area. In an effort to keep things dry, we covered the dog run with a roof and now the chickens refuse to sleep inside the coop -- instead they insist on sleeping on top of the coop-house roof. Hopefully they will be smart enough to sleep inside once the weather turns cold. I am awaiting our first egg. Any day now, I think. Sophia (the Salmon Faverolles) shows all the signs of being ready to lay: she's rounded out the bedding in the nest box, sits on the nest on and off during the day, and does the 'submissive squat' thing whenever I approach her. She's been doing that for about a week. Blanche (the NH Red) has been seen poking around the nest area, but doesn't squat yet. I check the box every day but so far, nothing. I'm feeding them a commercial Layer crumble food and they have oyster shell bits available to them. They get some healthy treats every other day. Any advice or tips from the BYC community would be welcome.