Nesting Box per hen?


In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 22, 2014
How many nesting boxes do you have per hen? I have 2 hens and 2 nesting boxes and they both lay in the same box everyday. I am building a new coop and wondering how many hens I can have vs. how many nesting boxes needed. Also, any tips on what you use for nesting boxes or how to build the easiest ones? Thank you!
The general rule of thumb is 1 nesting box for 3-4 birds. I find that most of my birds use the same box. I have 9 laying hens right now and I often find 5+ eggs in their favorite box. When one of my girls was broody this spring she refused to share the box and then everyone was using the other box until I moved her.
You might be able to put a piece of plywood in the side of a milk crate and then turn the milk crate on its side.
^^ Yes I agree, 1 nest box per 3-4 birds but you'll find that there's ALWAYS a favourite box. Most or all of the eggs will be just in one. I always see my hens squished next to each other laying their eggs, refusing to budge. It's normal.

My favourite types of nest boxes for my hens are milk crates turned on their side or square homemade ones built from plywood.
I'm down to 20 hens in my main coop. I have 6 nesting boxes. 18 of the birds use 2 boxes
I think the other two hens would prefer to use those two boxes also, they just get tired of holding it!

My best nesting boxes are rubbermaid totes, layed on their side. Private, easy to move or re-arrainge, easy to get into and out of, 2 hens can fit at one time if they're friendly, and most important they're easy to clean if (when) and egg gets broken and yolk sticks to everything.

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