Laying In Bottom Nest Boxes

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Keisha, Apr 28, 2008.

  1. Keisha

    Keisha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 27, 2007
    Iowa
    Ok So I've got 16 laying hens. 12 nest boxes in their coop with them. Not all 16 lay everyday since some of these are bantams. But They always lay in the bottom 3 nestboxes. Sometimes on a rare occasion there will be a single on the next level up on the left side but otherwise nothing there. There ends up being like 5ish (give or take) eggs in each box. So why do they all lay in the bottoms ones, is it because they are closer to the ground and feel safer that way?? I would think they would use the empty ones, but I guess not.
    Any way I can get them to lay in the upper nest boxes too?
     
  2. steffpeck

    steffpeck Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2007
    Erda, UT
    I have found this behavior so interesting!! We have 10 hens with 3 nest boxes, we were gone over the weekend, and didn't get the eggs collected and when I went to gather the eggs, I found, -0- in the left side nest box, 4 in the right side nest box, and 18 in the middle nest box. I just don't get it!! I think they have their favorite box and they will wait to lay in that box. I have even found a few eggs on the ground when one of the boxes has no eggs in it. Almost like they held it as long as they could and couldn't get into "their" box so they just had to lay it where they were. It makes me laugh.
     
  3. Keisha

    Keisha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 27, 2007
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    Yea i have no idea why they do it. Since some of them roost on the top of the nest box instead of on the roosts. So i wouldnt think it would be that they are afraid of heights. Ive also found eggs right outside t heir favorite nest box.
     
  4. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2008
    You can always try putting a fake egg or a golf ball in the other nest boxes. Chaces are though, that they will continue to line up and wait for their favorite nest, or the one closest to it. It's nothing to worry about unless they start really fighting over it. They are just being their 'hennish' selves. It's normal for them.

    -Kim
     
  5. Keisha

    Keisha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 27, 2007
    Iowa
    My chickens dont seem to like the golf balls in their nests, they kick them out. [​IMG]
     
  6. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    LOL. Must not be golf fans, I don't care for the sport myself. LOL

    If not golf-balls, how about the wooden eggs? Just have to remember to mark them, I know every time I see them and am not accustomed to them, I reach in to collect them.

    As long as they are not beating each other up for a single nest, I think it's fine honestly. The wooden or fake eggs would encourage them to lay in the top nests, but it is definately not a gaurantee.

    -Kim
     
  7. utahmethodist

    utahmethodist Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 7, 2008
    SLC, UT
    Maybe they prefer the lower nests because they don't want any future chicks to have to jump down too far after they hatch.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. tvtaber

    tvtaber Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Central CA
    Same situation here. We made the nests a two by two square box, but it the rare egg that get laid on the top! The golf ball didn't seem to help, although it did get them laying in the boxes instead of on the coop floor (yucky!). I even have two RIRs that lay in the same nest at the same time, which is just so cute!
     

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