Separate nesting house?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Mark, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. Mark

    Mark Songster

    May 13, 2007
    North Central Texas
    We have 17 hens, 16 two month old chicks and 1 year old hen. They roost in two chicken tractors and free range on the several acres we own. The year old hen used to lay eggs in a box in the roosting house, but she now shares the roosting house with 4 chicks and has been laying eggs under some debris against an out building (we just found her nest this weekend. She had become broody and disappeared entirely for 2 days).

    I've considered adding next boxes to the tractors, but it would add weight and shrink the size of the runs (6x8 and 6x5). We lock the birds up if no one will be around in the evening to shut them in.

    The other option that comes to mind is a separate nesting 'house' or multiple little nesting boxes.

    Anyone have an opinion on this?


  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I would think it is best to have nesting boxes where they will be cooped up in case they need to lay before you can let them out. After that though, there is no problem having other nesting boxes outside if there are no day preds that go and eat eggs in your area and you don't mind the extra work to check multiple areas for eggs. I have 3 hutches, one in with the main flock, that the girls like to go out and lay their eggs in. Most are usually in the hutch in their main living area, but I will find a few eggs in other hutches around the place... in addition in all the wrong places like on top of haybales, in an old tire, under trees, on the outside of the nest box or in the cat house...

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