Nest Box Access

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by RedDrgn, Sep 26, 2011.

  1. RedDrgn

    RedDrgn Anachronistic Anomaly

    May 11, 2011
    West Virginia
    My Coop
    When we first moved our flock of 5 into the coop, they would all huddle in a pile in one of the 3 nest boxes. I read that that was a really bad habit for them to develop, so we blocked off the nest boxes about 2 weeks later.

    Our flock will be 12 weeks old tomorrow, and they have been dutifully using their roosting bar every night for about a month and a half now, without fail. We still have the nest boxes blocked, so I was wondering at what point we should/could open them. I know it'll be a good while yet before anyone even thinks of laying an egg...maybe longer since we'll be into the end of autumn/early winter before they're even old enough, but I've read a lot of threads where people's chickens seem to like to "practice" visits to the nest boxes and check things out before they get around to laying (apparently sometimes well in advance). So should I open the boxes now or wait awhile longer?

  2. Hillbilly Hen

    Hillbilly Hen Crowing

    Apr 11, 2009
    Newaygo Michigan
    I would wait about another two or three weeks.
  3. JodyJo

    JodyJo Songster

    Sep 27, 2010
  4. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Songster

    Jul 22, 2010
    Anderson, Texas
    I never blocked mine off but always kept some fake eggs in them.

  5. RedDrgn

    RedDrgn Anachronistic Anomaly

    May 11, 2011
    West Virginia
    My Coop
    Quote:If they hadn't taken to sleeping in them, I wouldn't have blocked them. It took them two days after I blocked them for them to give up trying to circumvent the blocks when they went in the coop at night. [​IMG]

    How necessary are fake eggs? Will we probably need them or only if they get ideas about laying elsewhere? They're only allowed to free range when my DH or I are out in the yard with them, so they really wouldn't get much chance to stick eggs anywhere outside of their coop/run.

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