Number of nesting boxes

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Wicked Gardener, Sep 7, 2011.

  1. Wicked Gardener

    Wicked Gardener In the Brooder

    Mar 30, 2010
    Pleasant Hill, CA
    So, I had read a few times that hens will "share" nesting boxes and you don't need the same amount of boxes as birds. We have 6 girls, all age 21 weeks. Only one has been laying (first egg last Thursday) and the other ones don't really look like they are even ready. The girl who is paying rent looks like she takes up all the space in the box that she has chosen. It doesn't look to me like theres enough room to share with others. How many nesting boxes should I really have made???
  2. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    I would go with two. You'll be surprised that in spite of it looking crowded I've had as many a three hens in one nest box.
  3. DebbieDee

    DebbieDee Chirping

    Apr 4, 2011
    I have 2 laying hens and 3 nesting boxes. They use the same nest. They take turns......When the other 3 start laying they can use the others. I used to put fake eggs in there to show them where to lay....It seemed to work as I found a few of the early ones in a few strange places...
  4. Fierlin1182

    Fierlin1182 powered-flight

    Aug 26, 2011
    I'd also go with two. We have three hens and three nest boxes: only one is ever in use at any one time. It's odd, but they seem to like sharing. The reason I'd get two is that they don't particularly like waiting [​IMG] It's like the queues at the loo, if someone's taking ages in one there's the other free... [​IMG]
  5. Kaeta44

    Kaeta44 Chirping

    I have 8 chickens and my 2 nest boxes seem perfectly adequate. In the end, the hens lay where they decide to lay and that's not necessarily where you want them to lay. We have one who always lays just to the left, but outside, the nest boxes. Another who refuses to lay inside the coop at all - she lays her eggs where ever she happens to be at the time. We've had 2 brooding the same clutch of eggs in one nest and the others popping in with them, one at a time, to add to the clutch!

    Life is never dull when you keep chickens.
  6. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Feb 20, 2008
    Opelousas, Louisiana
    I say 2 nesting boxes or no more than 3. Do you have a separate brooder box for when they will go broody?
  7. Wicked Gardener

    Wicked Gardener In the Brooder

    Mar 30, 2010
    Pleasant Hill, CA
    Wow, thanks guys...And,no I do not have a broody box. I shall now look into that! Thanks again...
  8. kristip

    kristip Songster

    Jul 29, 2010
    New Glarus
    I would say 2... I have 10 girls, 7 of which are laying. I have a 4 pod ( 2 over 2) of nest boxes. They wont use the top ones, and only lay in one of the bottom ones. all except the one bantam and I am creating a nest box in the run for her because she does not like to go in the coop as much with the big girls. Silly chicken. Still waiting for my 7 in one day. Have gotten 6 but not 7 yet!!

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