My Frizzle sleeps in the nest not on the roost.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by midget_farms, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. midget_farms

    midget_farms Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2008
    Dunlap Illinois
    Any idea why my Frizzle would prefer to sleep in the nest & doesn't roost? do I have the roost too high (12 in off the ground). I've had her about a week now & she has never gone on the roost. Only sleeps in the nest.

    She isn't broody & has been laying eggs regularly. She just likes to sleep in the nest.

    I have to clean it more often because she messes it up.
     
  2. Chirpy

    Chirpy Balderdash

    3,788
    12
    221
    May 24, 2007
    Colorado
    I totally feel for you ... I have several hens that sleep in the nest boxes instead of on the roost. I do hate pooey eggs.

    Is your roost higher than the nest boxes? Chickens like to sleep at the highest available point. I didn't know that when we built our hen house. We are adding on in a couple of months and will fix my mistake. I'm hoping my hens will then start to use the roost ... I'm not thinking they will but I'm hoping.

    If your roost is higher than your nest boxes then I have no idea why they are roosting there. I'm sure others with far more experience than I have will give you some good ideas. (And, I'll be watching so I can learn more about this issue also.)
     
  3. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,156
    21
    231
    Nov 19, 2007
    Pennsylvania
    Mine sleep in the nests occassionally for the following reasons:

    - they're thinking about going broody, or have gone broody
    - they got chased off the roost by alpha hen after dark and couldn't find their way back in the dark so they hop in the closest space which is a nest
    - for some other reason they weren't getting along with the other chickens and guineas on the roost (often my newbies will sleep in the nest area since it's "unclaimed")
    - if they feel sick and want to be by themselves (if this is the case I put them in a separate hospital pen).
    - they just like it better
    -once one had a hurt leg and couldn't fly up to the roost

    I don't like to clean poopy nests either, so here's my solution: after dark, when I shut the henhouse door, if any are roosting in the nest, I physically move them to the roost. It takes 2-3 days of this "training" and they stop sleeping in the nest. Chickens are creatures of habit, and if you let them sleep in the nest, they'll do it continuously.

    Some old-time nest boxes have a hinged bar across the front --during the day it's for the hens to stand on before hopping into the nest, but in the afternoon after collecting eggs, it can be moved upward to block access to the nest. If you shut the door after dark, you move the bar down again so they can lay eggs in the early morning.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by