My Ameraucauna won't use the nesting box...

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jabherjaw, Mar 8, 2016.

  1. jabherjaw

    jabherjaw Hatching

    Jul 24, 2015
    Hi all...We have 6 chickens, and our nesting area is plenty big for everyone to comfortably lay, and I keep it clean and fresh. For some reason though, my ameraucauna won't lay her eggs in there. She will pull straw from the nest and make her own little spot in the corner of the coop. She is kind of the "low man on the totem pole" so to speak, and when she started laying before my barnevelder did, the barnevelder pecked the feathers off of her back. So I'm wondering if we need to set up a divider in the nest that turns our one big box into two normal sized boxes, or if it's normal for the bottom chicken to not "be allowed" to lay with the rest?

    It's a weird relationship between Rosemary (the ameraucauna) and Biggie (the barnevelder)...They were the last two to start laying several months after everyone else. You rarely see one without the other and Rosemary often tries to be under Biggie. Anyways, thanks in advance for any advice.

  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockwit Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Your theory seems very likely -the subordinate does not feel comfortable laying with the others. You can divide the nest area and see how it goes, but it may take a while before she will be willing to use the nest. Chickens are creatures of habit, so you may have to be patient. My new layers do the same, but I am not too bothered, as long as they lay in the coop, where i can find the eggs, its ok (and BTW, i put some additional nest boxes in the coop, but they still do not want to use them - frustrating, but life).

    All the best
  3. phillip26

    phillip26 In the Brooder

    Feb 27, 2016
    I put about 6 nests in my coop for my 8 hens they wont touch them they will drag the straw out of a nest to a corner and lay there. The next day i can empty the corner out and they will do the same so i gave in and let em all lay in the corner. Makes it easier to collect eggs that way
  4. sawilliams

    sawilliams Songster

    Nov 12, 2015
    Nor Cal
    I would agree she doesn't feel "safe" in the nesting box.

    Golf balls or fake eggs might help her to see that is a safe place to lay

    Spilting the box so she feels separated from others, might make her feel more secure.

    Pine shaving wouldn't be as movable, so she couldn't rebuild else where.

    I have 4 12x12 boxes for my 6 girls. 2 prefer the first box, 1 prefers the second and 1 prefers the 4th. My other 2 will lay in which ever box is available, though 1 on the 2 prefers to use a box that already has at least 1 egg in it.
  5. orion141

    orion141 In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2015
    I agree that golf balls might help. I actually blocked off the areas in my coop that they pullets were laying their eggs in and they eventually started laying in the next boxes with the other pullets.

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