I am pretty sure one of my pullets (24 weeks) is about to start laying. She is a heritage breed (pita pinta), so they start laying on the later side. She has been doing the egg squat for several days now. For the last three days, she has gone up and down the stairs into the coop (which is upstairs), scratched around in the pine shavings, and come back down, several times. This is new behavior -- until now, once they were in the run, they stayed downstairs all day and returned to the coop only to roost in the evening. (There is a nesting box in the coop, but I don't think she's going into that.) I've tried to approach and see what she is doing in the coop, but I can't often catch her. One time I managed to see, and she was basically scratching around and squatting a bit. She's going up and down so much, I'm worried that something might be preventing her from laying. Is it normal for them to seem to be trying repeatedly before they finally lay an egg when it's their first one ever? They have been kind of tetchy lately, and I'm not sure I could grab her to look at her vent without really upsetting her, not that I would know what I was looking at anyway. She has one sister, who doesn't seem quite there yet, and no other birds, so there's no one to show her what to do. On the first day that she was going up to the coop repeatedly, her sister followed her, but she has now stopped doing that and waits downstairs. I let them out to free range a little while ago, and the one at POL seems to be acting normally otherwise and was enjoying digging and foraging. Edited to add: I just went back out there while she was upstairs, and she was perched up on her roosting bar (it is still the middle of the day here and totally light out). She let me pet her, and I tried to look under her since she was above my eye level, but all I can see is fluffy butt. I let her have a minute without me bothering her up there, and then after that she jumped down on her own and came downstairs with her sister again.