nest box or not-she's not puttin 'em there

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by bwebb7, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. bwebb7

    bwebb7 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 16, 2008
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    I have a black austrlorp and she has laid 8-10 eggs in the last 3 weeks-I THINK!
    She was hatched in March and is in with all my other hens (21) that hatched in May (16) and I'm not sure if they are eating:barnie:idunno the eggs or she's just not that regular yet!
    I do have 2 nest boxes mounted on the wall about 18 inches off the floor. Then I put a milk crate (filled with shavings) in there for her on the floor and all I have now is an empty milk crate. When I first put the nest boxes in there I filled with hay and they ate it and strew it all over!
    O.K. I was raking and cleaning the coop and found an egg buried in the shavings-
    Is there a sure fire way to get her to use the box?
     
  2. oldegger

    oldegger Out Of The Brooder

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    a sure fired way? locking her in the nesting box! LOL

    I built 4 beautiful ( my opinion not the girls) nesting boxes in a partition wall 2 feet off the floor. with opening back panels so i could collect eggs without going in to the girls area. So they all decided they would all lay there eggs in a nest they made in the shavings under a raised ( 12" above the floor) platform in one corner. BTW the platform was for the girls to get to a water-er mounted 2' off the floor in the same corner. They would rather die of thirst than hop up on the lower platform to get a drink. But it makes a great roof over there nest.
    Are you beginning to see a pattern here?
    Realising ( it took a while) I the supreme coop designer/builder/financier had broken the first rule Build what the customer wants .
    So with hat in hand I went and had a heart to heart with Henryetta (busel butted White Leghorn in charge) . After the 9 girls elected a 3 member building review committee who formed 2 additional working groups and hiring an avian architect( billed to mu ah) I received a 32 page review of all work to date. With an attached 16 item punch list.
    Buried in the 5 page review on nesting boxes. How did I expect them to leap up two storys while suffering labor pains. Nesting boxes shall be no higher than 6" above the mean average level of the litter. As to the aforementioned litter. As I had decided on my own with out there advice or consent to subject them to the deep litter method all egg hereafter have to be gathered from there side of the partition wall. So I get to know what its like to walk in there shoes
    After making the above adjustments 7 of the 8 out of 9 that are laying use the newly located nesting boxes. 0 of the 7 lay in the nesting box baited with a golf ball. One RIR still prefers under the platform in the corner
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2008
  3. bwebb7

    bwebb7 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Brooksville, Fl
    Ha Ha Ha -thanks oldegger
    I do see a pattern! LOL
    But, that raises another question... should I put a slanted roof over them? I got a cheap door from the thrift store that I can cut to do that.
    I know that they are gonna do what they are gonna do, but finding eggs in a nest box would be a little bit of Christmas everyday!
    (I guess)
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2008
  4. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

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    Maybe sweet-talk them into it? I really don't know. I only have one laying right now and she's laid every one in the nest box. Even came back to it in the middle of the day once when she was out free-ranging the back yard. I didn't do anything special though. [​IMG]
     
  5. oldegger

    oldegger Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Now that they ar using them I may start raising them a little at a time untill ther back where I want them. I due have a piece of plywood at a 45 Degree angle on top of the boxes to keep them from roosting.
     
  6. chcknrs

    chcknrs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    half of my chickens use the designated nest box. The other half decided to fly into the rafters of the carport and lay eggs there, which then rolled off and splat! So we put an old doggie bed up there with soft blankies. They love it, and continue to escape the run and use it.
     
  7. lana

    lana Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 3, 2008
    Eureka, MO
    I HAVE A PROBLEM. MY GIRLS WON'T USE THEIR NESTS TO LAY IN. I PUT HAY IN THERE NOW INSTEAD OF CEDAR SHAVINGS, BUT MY MAIN PROBLEM IS I LET THEM PLAY IN THE YARD AND THEY ARE MAKING NEST AND LAYING THERE INSTEAD OF THE HOUSE. SHOULD I LOCK THEM IN FOR A COUPLE DAYS AND NOT IN THE YARD. THEY HAVE A RUN BUILT ON ALSO.

    KITTY
     
  8. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    My Coop
    Quotes from other BYC members.

    Rte.66_chicks :

    I used golf balls in my nest boxes, and so far, other than a couple that ended up under the roost from being laid at night, they have all been in the boxes. The boxes I created out of an old entertainment cabinet ended up about 14" x 16".

    Quote:I agree, I put golf balls in my nest boxes and they push the balls under them with the other eggs. I have 1 ball in each nest box.​
     
  9. Heather J

    Heather J Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine *almost* always use the nesting boxes, which are easy for them to reach from the ground because i have a roost nearby--unfortunately lower than the nesting box, so I have major poop problems, but there's nothing I can do about that until I move half the flock to the new coop), and I use golf balls. All seven use the top box almost without fail. Occasionally I have one hen who will lay int he bottom box if she is the first to lay that day, then everyone lays in the bottom box. Go figure. [​IMG]

    I recently added a desk/cabinet thing to one side of the coop with straw in the bottom so the muscovies will have somewhere to hide when the weather is bad, since they sleep in the chicken run where they are safe from predators, and from bossy geese in the other run. I found three chicken eggs in a nest out there yesterday. But none today, so we'll see what happens. They are going to lay wherever they want, just give them the best options you can and hope they catch on in a bit.
     

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