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Pullets sleeping in nest boxes

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MuscovyMad, Jun 17, 2011.

  1. MuscovyMad

    MuscovyMad Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I introduced 5 pullets into my coop after 2 of my hens were killed by a dog. However these pullets are sleeping in the nest boxes. I have seen them use the perches through the day and because i keep them on someone elses land i do not see them at night, however due to the mess in the boxes i'm pretty sure they are sleeping there [​IMG] . As a result my remaining hen has started to lay ouside instead of in the boxes. Is there any way to get the pullets to sleep on the roosts at night?
     
  2. Marshchick

    Marshchick Out Of The Brooder

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    May 16, 2011
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    What if you take them out of the nesting boxes in the evening and put them on the roost? Ours were laying on the floor at night, and we'd put a couple up there each night. Now they all go on the roost. It didn't take long for them to figure it out.
     
  3. N&MSchroeder

    N&MSchroeder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The lower chickens in the pecking order may not be allowed on the perch at night. My lower chickens were sleeping in the nest boxes until I built another perch across from my main perch. I just made sure that it was higher than the nest boxes. Problem solved. [​IMG]
     
  4. R.M. Hens

    R.M. Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have the same problem with my older girls. My nest boxes are higher than my roosts though. (hoping to change this soon) Are yours? This may or may not be the problem. Good Luck!
     
  5. StephanieD

    StephanieD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2011
    Why not just let them sleep in the nesting boxes?
     
  6. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    I'd guess it's more a pecking order issue - the hens aren't allowing them up there at night, pecking them off. You could add another roost, or hang out there late (since it sounds like you don't live there) and place them on the roosts after dark (when the hens can't really see to chase them off, or close the next boxes off each evening, and then get there early to uncover them... Other than building another roost, it's gonna take some diligence on your part for a week or two...
     
  7. R.M. Hens

    R.M. Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Sounds good but its very messy. I wish I would have done my homework before building my nesting boxes and roosts.
     
  8. rungirl

    rungirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just block off the nest boxes at night and open them up in the morning for the hens to lay in. They'll break the habit after a few days.
     
  9. MuscovyMad

    MuscovyMad Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 2 large perches that are slightly higer than the nest boxes, there is probably a spare 5 feet of perch. I don't think it is the hen pecking them off as she is a chubby cochin and there is only one of her and five pretty athletic cochin x OEGB pullets. So the recommendation is just to try and hang out there late on so that i can pick them up and put them on the roosts. All the pullets were hand reared and slept on shavings so i'm thinking they are just not used to the perches. I have seen them use them through the day though.

    And stephanie D i would like them to move as the nest boxes are getting covered in poo. And as a result any eggs laid in the boxes are also getting covered in poo, which may result in bacteria penetrating the shell and ruining the eggs :-( . Plus it has resulted in my one laying hen searching for places outside the coop and run to lay her eggs.
     

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