Laying/nesting in random places


In the Brooder
9 Years
Sep 11, 2010
My chickens are free ranging, at least part of the time, but the time is irregular based on when we're home. They WERE laying eggs in their nesting boxes. Now they've dropped them in random places, AND they've eaten a couple of them. What do I do?
My free-rangers do the same thing. You'd be amazed at the places they'll find to stash those eggs! Behind plywood sheets, under work benches, behind bricks, even under old weeds along a fence row. Keeps life interesting to say the least. What has worked well for me is to just let them find those places. I'll leave an egg there and they'll continue to lay in that spot. Rotate the "bait" egg out and all is well.
What about the eating of the eggs? And I wish I'd posted this this morning. I'm 80 miles from fake eggs!
I haven't tried this, so maybe someone with more experience can tell you better, but I've read several times that golf balls will work in place of fake eggs.
Would a rock work? I found one that looks an awful lot like my brown eggs.

I'm really worried. I was getting 3 eggs a day from my 4 buffs, but for the last 2 days I've only gotten 1. And I've looked and looked and don't see eggs, so am I to assume they're not laying or eating them?
Try anything ie egg shaped rock, golf balls, etc

Heat and stress can affect laying, maybe you have something prowling around? or a raiding raven? Snakes? Keep a lookout for shell remains
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