Question about my nesting boxes


11 Years
Apr 11, 2011
New York
I have two types in my coop, milk crates and a produce crate. My girls aren't laying yet but should soon, one middle of this month and the other two end of Sept-beginning of Oct (based on 20-24 weeks average).

The produce crate works well for all of them but they have to jump into it, right now the 3 chicks I have play in it. I put golf balls in it and when I get the chance I often put the two girls who will let me pick them up in it and tell them "egg."

Should I remove one of the side panels to make it easier for them?

Here is a pic, black crates in the back on the shelf are nesting boxes and then the wooden produce crate on the ground.

IMAG0596 by StonesChickens, on Flickr
The wooded produce crates seem perfect for nesting boxes. I would remove one of the wood slates and put in a fake or wooden egg so that they get the idea. Phyisically putting them in there will not do anything unless they are ready to lay an egg. Also, giving them access to the nest boxes too early is not a good idea either. However, if you feel that they are showing signs that they are getting ready to lay then giving them access and having a fake egg in the box should be enough. I could be wrong about this, but I also think that the nest boxes would be better if they were all together and on the same level but not higher then their roosts.
I agree... just taking one of the slats off the front would make them perfect. I think they would still lay in there as is, though. When my girls were ranging one day, I found two eggs in a 5 gallon bucket. Surpise mom! lol.

I just think it would make it a little easier for them to get in and out if the one side was a little shorter. If you didn't want to rip a panel off your crates, you could try turning them on their side. Granted, they wouldn't keep in all the hay. Just a thought. Best of luck!
Why do you say it's not a good idea to introduce nest boxes too early? I find the sooner the better. It gives them time to become familiar with them. You may have to clean them out now and then if they are sleeping in them but at least they will use them when the time comes. Beats hunting for eggs!
Only the chicks get in the nesting boxes, the hens have to be put in them. I have yet to see any poo in them.

I like the idea of turning the produce crates on their sides is a good one I will try it tomorrow. Thanks. I am probably just over thinking it while anxiously waiting for eggs. Lol

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