Roosts and Nestbox layout

Blue_Myst

Songster
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
3,808
11
201
This spring I'm totally reformatting my coop to make it more efficient and easier to clean. However, with the plans which I have now, I only have roughly 40" by 30" (ground surface, basically unlimited height) of space to put roosts for, at maximum, nine chickens. So, here are my questions:

(1) Is it best to make the roosts all one height, or will they still use the roosts if they are made at different heights?

(2) I know my best bet is probably the ladder design, but how well does this work? Do the hens bother using the lower 'rungs' on the ladder, or just fight over the top one?

(3) The type of roosts I was thinking of using would probably give roughly 65 to 70 inches of roosting space, is this enough for nine hens?

And nestboxes...

(1) I have the option of either two or four nestboxes. Is two enough for nine hens, or should I go out of my way to make it four?

(2) Will hens still lay in a nestbox if sunlight can shine into it during a few hours of the day, or do they only lay in dark spaces?

Sorry for such a long post. Thanks for any opinions/advice!
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Omran

Crowing
Jul 26, 2008
3,074
13
274
Bagdad KY
First of all you don't have to be sorry for a long post,that's what we do here.

for your ????/

Rosst will bne the best if all of them get the same hight then they don't fight for the best spot. and if you make the ladder type roost the alfa hens (boss hens) will be on top and the weak one on the bottom.

2 nest boxes are more than enough, I build formy hens like 8 boxes and they are using only two.
Don't forget, put the nest boxes on the opposit side of the roost or just not near the roost.that way they will not sleep in them.

Best of luck.

Omran
 

patandchickens

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Apr 20, 2007
12,520
398
341
Ontario, Canada
Quote:
THey will still use them if they're different heights BUT having them all the same height minimizes squabbling.

(3) The type of roosts I was thinking of using would probably give roughly 65 to 70 inches of roosting space, is this enough for nine hens?

It's really really tight (only about 7-8" per hen). They can all fit if they are all in a lovey snuggly mood. More roost space would really be better, though.

(1) I have the option of either two or four nestboxes. Is two enough for nine hens, or should I go out of my way to make it four?

Personally I'd do three
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but you can probably get away with two if you have to, especially if you make them somewhat oversize.

(2) Will hens still lay in a nestbox if sunlight can shine into it during a few hours of the day

Mine do but I don't know how true that is of chickens in general.

Good luck, have fun,

Pat​
 

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