Line Up at Nest


8 Years
Apr 13, 2011
Lake Placid, FL
I have 6 red sex links who have all started laying. There are three nest boxes all exactly the same and all right next to each other. All six now lay their eggs in the same nest box which is probably OK except that they all seem to lay around the same time. I have seen two of them in the same nest box with another waiting in line when there are two empty nest boxes right there. Today I went out and there were six eggs all in the first nest box. So far all of the eggs have been intact and it does not seem to bother any of them that there are eggs in the box. Is there any way to train some of them to use a different box. I was thinking that I would wait until the first couple lay their eggs and then block off that first nest box and see if they would go to the unblocked ones. Anyone have any suggestions or experience in this or should I just leave it alone.
Nothing to worry about, just chickens being chickens. If you really want them to try other nest, place an egg in the other nest.
I had fake egss in all of the nests until they started to lay. I will put the fake eggs back in the other two nests they do not use and see what happens
Similar problem here. I think hen 1 is not allowing hen 2 to use the nest box. And then hen 2 lays her egg on the ramp. Messy. Of course I could be mistaken. And these are all hen 1s eggs as the egg on the ramp has a soft shell. (Can they lay two in a morning?)

Getting back to the nest boxes - I read somewhere here that they don't need individual boxes. So I took the divider out. Should I put it back in?
For whatever chicken reasons they have, they do seem to like to lay in the same box. I had 10 boxes and about 20 plus hens, but only 2 or 3 were ever used. They will pile 2 (and sometimes more!) hens at the same time in one box. It's funny when 2 are broody on the same nest, but they work it out.
Chicken behaviour is really strange. At about 11:30 this morning as suggested I put fake eggs in the two nest boxes that they do not use. I just went out to check and both of the fake eggs were tossed out of the nest boxes. I can not figure them out in this regard but they give us such great eggs with hard shells and great tasting that I will not make a formal complaint.
People say chickens will use the same nest box. I don't know........I have sixteen gals and 16 nest boxes. I never put a fake egg in any box, and the girls lay in several boxes each day. The girls always vary which box is used and the number of eggs in each box. In other words I never know which box will have how many eggs.
What you read was probably saying that chickens do not claim personal nests to the exlusion of others, not unlike urinals.

My nest dividers are in slots and can be re-arranged. I tried various size combos and found that they prefer snug fitting nests.
Just roll with it - chickens do chicken things for chicken reasons that we will never understand. I have 12 hens and 3 nest boxes - typically they all lay in one box, sometimes they split their eggs between two boxes. They rarely use the third box but then out of the blue, for a day or two, the eggs will be there instead. And I too frequently have 2-3 hens in one box at a time - not sure how they fit or how the eggs don't get broken, but they don't.

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