Nest boxes too small?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Patoot, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. Patoot

    Patoot Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 20, 2010
    I think my boxes might be too small. Hennie is going in them, but it looks like she doesn't have enough room to turn around well. I used rubbermaid bins. They are completely enclosed except for an opening for them to climb in. They are all RIR. The dimensions of the box are 18 inches wide, 14 inches tall, and 14 inches deep. However, it tapers so the depth at her feet would be only 9 inches and the width maybe 12 inches. They looked big, but when I saw her go in, I could see she had to crouch to turn around. I don't know. Maybe they are fine??

    Bree
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    They're probably fine. Chickens like to feel as if they are safely tucked away. If the start laying outside, maybe try one that is a little larger.
     
  3. dee88

    dee88 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi Patoot,

    That sounds plenty big to me! I think my nesting boxes are 12" X 12" and also asked the question on this website and got a few answers back saying that my boxes are plenty big and that the chickens like to feel cozy and secure. Do you have the boxes set off the ground? Mine are about 18" off the ground. My RIR just started laying and she hasn't laid in my boxes either. I understand your concern and hope that both of our chickies start laying in their boxes!
     
  4. Casey3043

    Casey3043 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have some covered cat litter boxes for supplemental nest boxes. I have 3 built in boxes and 2 litter boxes for 29 hens. The litter boxes are very popular with the hens, and they will wait for one of those. Last night there were nine eggs in one of the litter boxes. I'm going to walmart to get another one, because they have been laying on the floor in their "sleeping coop" (no feed, water, or nests in there, just roosting boards) and last night I stepped on an egg while closing the pop door. Ewwww!

    I think your boxes are large enough, but if you think it tapers too much at the base, try the litter box method. They are easy to clean, too and not expensive. Be sure you get the ones with covers.

    Good luck with it. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2010
  5. Patoot

    Patoot Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well cancel that!

    She finally laid in the box!!! She was in there for awhile scratching around and when she finally emerged, there was an egg next to the golf ball. I'm so proud of her. She got raisins!

    I posted this this morning and about 2 hrs later she laid in the box.

    She just started laying and she has been giving me an egg everyday. What a good girl.

    Bree
     
  6. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    They will lay in most anything, covered or uncovered, or just a a spot they hollowed out a bit on the coop floor. I lefr a board maybe 18"x24" leaning against the coop wall and for a while the spot behind it was the favorite nest. Like most things chicken, they have individual preferences. Some will want the nest down low and others will go for the higher one.
     
  7. dee88

    dee88 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Patoot,

    Well good for you! You didn't have to do a thing!!! I hope my RIR will start laying in her little nesting box. Congrats!
     

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