pullets in laying boxes

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by hedylaymore, Nov 20, 2014.

  1. hedylaymore

    hedylaymore Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 30, 2014
    I am new to backyard chickens. I recently acquired a coop and six pullets, 3 Barred Plymouth Rocks and three RI Reds. When it is cold at night (below freezing), all six of them pile into one 14"X14" nesting box. So far, they haven't smothered and they seem fine with that arrangement. When they start laying, are they still going to want to sleep in the nesting boxes? We have a new roost that is higher than the boxes. The roost that came with the coop isn't higher than the boxes, and they have chosen to sleep in the three boxes since the day we got them. I just hope that when they start laying they'll use the boxes only for laying eggs. How can I assure that that happens? Will they find the new roost and sleep on it, or will I have to close off the laying boxes for a night or two?They should start laying after the first of the year.
     
  2. familyfarm1

    familyfarm1 Overrun With Chickens

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    Hello and Welcome to BYC!
    Yes I recommend closing of the nesting boxes at night and opening them in the day. You have to show them the roost, so you should put them on it at night (on the first night). They should want to go on that roost unless there isn't enough room. Hope you figure it out!
     
  3. hedylaymore

    hedylaymore Out Of The Brooder

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    There's plenty of room on the new roost. Thanks for your response!
     
  4. familyfarm1

    familyfarm1 Overrun With Chickens

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    [​IMG]
     
  5. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They're probably just habituated to sleeping in the boxes at this point - close them off and leave them closed until they start laying.
     
  6. hedylaymore

    hedylaymore Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for the suggestions! To my surprise, my pullets discovered the new roost the first night it was there, and they transferred themselves to the roost and are leaving the nesting boxes alone! I didn't have to close off the nesting boxes to retrain them. Their instinct, to roost on the highest place available, worked like a charm. Now the nesting boxes are staying relatively clean!! I am really looking forward to the day we find the first egg. Am learning more about chickens every day.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Good!!!

    I think your screen name is hilarious!
     

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