nests for free rangers

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by brookwoodpat, Sep 17, 2008.

  1. brookwoodpat

    brookwoodpat Songster

    May 11, 2008
    I have a coop for my birds, but they have free range of my acre fenced yard during the day. They have just started laying -- I got six eggs today -- I have 3 hens with bright red combs and three as old but the combs aren't so bright red, and 5 16 week old birds that probably aren't laying yet. I think only three are laying so far and I missed noticing the eggs yesterday.

    Anyway, for all of you who allow your birds to free range and get all the grass, weedseeds, and bugs they want, do you have a lot of problem with birds choosing nests outside the coop where you can't find them? how do you increase the odds of their laying in the coop?
  2. SGM

    SGM Songster

    Aug 18, 2008
    Easley, SC
    Most of the birds I've free ranged I ended up not setting up nest boxes for them. As a result they nested wherever they wanted. When I have stalls bedded down for my goats to kid, the hens will build a nest in a corner of the stall and lay there. Makes it easy to locate and collect eggs if they're in the goat's stalls.
  3. RebelsHope

    RebelsHope Songster

    Jul 27, 2007
    My experience is the same. I have found that the hens choose their place and then almost always lay there. If you figure out where that is you can just collect them from there.
  4. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Songster

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    Mine lay in the coop as well as the garage, driveway, gardens,grass ect ect... Yesturday i was cleaning out the coop i have set up in the garage for some special chickens, they loved laying in a bagof pine shavings until i used it up. I threw the plastic bag in the trash and my light brahma crawled into the garbage can trying to make a nest in the plastic bag.Its an easter egg hunt everyday [​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2008
  5. jacyjones

    jacyjones Songster

    Jun 9, 2008
    Aberystwyth, Wales
    My chickens free range and lay in their nest boxes. If I seem to get too few eggs and cannot find a nest on my land I shut them all in the run and shed for the day until they have all laid and that seems to get them back into laying where I want them to!

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