Nesting boxes not ready?

kris13

Chirping
Jun 10, 2016
103
15
94
We did the whole thing of keeping them closed for the first few weeks, but now one especially looks very close to laying, but my DH is swamped this week and doesn't think he'll get them all done. Is it a problem if one lays w/o the box or do I need to figure out how to finish /get them open this week. Posting the picture of the one who looks close, they are just 12-13 weeks, so do we have a little more time than we think?


 

oldhenlikesdogs

Suffering Succotash
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 16, 2015
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You might still have time. Not all first time layers will do it in the nestboxes. Get them built as soon as you can and put fake eggs in them to show them it's safe.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
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...and pullets can be maddening, with comb color bursting with color one minute, then paling back out the next..smh..haha!

Good to get nests ready and baited with fake eggs/golf balls sooner than needed tho,
so they can scope them out and learn not to roost(sleep) in them before they actually lay.

12-13 weeks is pretty early tho...even for sexlinks.
 

jpalmatier83

Chirping
Jul 15, 2016
152
16
91
Traverse City, MI
Agree with aart, 12-13 weeks is quite early. Research lead me to be surprised when my girls started laying at 14-15. Most everyone else's general consensus is that 16 is early and 20-24 is average.

Are they squatting? Mine started to lay about a week after they started to squat.

All that being said, many times the first eggs don't go in the nesting box, even if it's available. The chicken doesn't even know what's happening. I've heard of them referred to as "top shelf" and "upper deckers" when chickens lay an egg on the roost and it crashes to the floor. As long as you get the nesting boxes in soon and toss in some decoy eggs you'll be fine.
 

donrae

Hopelessly Addicted
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Jun 18, 2010
31,453
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Southern Oregon
You've got time.

And she only needs one. If there's not a box available, she'll just pick a cozy corner and lay there. It won't be a big deal, once the desired spot is ready just bait it with a fake or sacrifice egg and she'll probably be happy to move spots.
 

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