Sleeping in the nesting box

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by real_redhead, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. real_redhead

    real_redhead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is it ok for them to sleep in a nesting box and not roost? I have 5 girls who all used to roost. The roost is about 10 inches above the floor of the coop (its a small tractor) One I have noticed can't seem to get up on the roost (I think she is too big) and I have found her laying on the floor. My EE who is at the bottom of the pecking order and is molting used to roost but I have found that she has been sleeping a one of the nesting boxes the last several nights. It's getting cold here down in the 30's at night and I worry about her not being warm since she isn't snuggled on the roost with the others.
     
  2. diggerthechickenman

    diggerthechickenman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    how big is the roost ? and how big is the tractor?
     
  3. real_redhead

    real_redhead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The tractor is probably about 3.5 by 5 and the roost is close to 4.5/5 feet. Here is a picture - sorry couldn't figure out how to turn pic!

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2011
  4. real_redhead

    real_redhead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is day 4 or 5 and my EE is still sleeping in the nesting box and the other girls seem more aggressive towards her lately, maybe cause she is molting?
     
  5. real_redhead

    real_redhead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She is still sleeping in the nesting box, last night I tried to get the others to let her on the roost and they wouldn't. She just went back to the box. Any need to worry? There was plenty of room on the roosting pole.
     
  6. donnavee

    donnavee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Most of my chickens become a little weird when they molt - shyer, don't eat as well, and tend to stay by themselves more. The last chick we got this year was younger than the others and not a part of the flock so I let her sleep in a nest box - this was early Sept, and she has still been sleeping there. However, she has grown and is more integrated into the flock now and last night when I did "chicken count", I noticed she was on the top roost crammed in with the others. There is plenty of room on the bottom roost but guess she decided to go for it. The downside of sleeping in the nest box is the poop, but if that is where she wants to be, personally I would let her alone until she feels like socializing with the others again. Chickens can be really mean at bedtime - at least mine are - little she devils.
     
  7. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I see you haven't gotten a lot of replies or guidance.

    First, your "coop" is too small. Those are full sized hens and they need some space. They need a roosting bar, located much higher than the nesting box, that is 5 feet long, minimum. 6' long would be ideal. If the nesting boxes are not below the roosting bar, they'll sleep in the box, but the excessive pooping at night makes a horrid mess of it.

    I highly suggest you get something more substantial in size and convenience before winter sets in. Hope that helps, although my guidance is challenging, I suppose.
     
  8. kidcody

    kidcody Overrun With Chickens

    I agree with Fred's hens but I still have a couple who just like to sleep in the nest box. I don't mind (plus I don't think I could make them change there minds anyway) I have a huge coop. I find they like to sleep where they feel it is the most comfortable for them and safe. It does seem the dominate hens have the best roosting place.
     
  9. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The first sign of a molt in our coop is a hen overnight in a nest box and it usually starts BEFORE they drop the feathers. I think they just feel lousy and need a place to hide and vegetate until they feel better. I'm like that too.
     

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