Sleeping in the nesting boxes

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by NewBostonChick, Jul 27, 2010.

  1. NewBostonChick

    NewBostonChick Chirping

    Jul 14, 2010
    New Boston, NH
    Hello, I am a new chick Momma... My 7 girls, born May 20. 2010, are now outside in their new coop and run.. They go in about 8pm each night and at least 4 of them are trying to crowd into one nesting box.. another is settled down in the other nesting box.. I have 4 boxes... one goes up higher on the side board 2X4.. and one, sometimes two, seem happy on the roost.. I have been told it is OK for them to sleep in the nesting boxes and then someone else tells me no.. do not let them sleep in the nesting boxes.. that I should train them that this is the area to lay their eggs only.. What do others think? They seem happy in the boxes and where each one settles for the night... Is it a big deal and should I cover the boxes so they cannot go into them or just let them be... Thanks...
  2. tedabug

    tedabug Songster

    May 2, 2010
    Pacific Northwest
    I'm only a few months ahead of you, but had the same issue. Mine went out to the coop at 8 weeks and most preferred the boxes. I kept bedding out of the boxes, but they would roost on the edge and poop into them. (probably because they were lower than the roost) Eventually they all figured it out except one. I had one EE who still loved the edge one particular box and slept there until 20 weeks with the other birds butts in her face. I eventually put nesting material in the other two boxes and kept a piece of cardboard in her "poop box" to catch the waste. Just a week or two ago she finally joined the other 3 on the roost and her old box is now a nest for her to lay her eggs. It all works out. Yours are still young and figuring it all out. Try moving them at night onto the roost before you go to bed. That helps. I only had the one stubborn one.

    Good luck!
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2010
  3. mistyfeather

    mistyfeather Songster

    Oct 31, 2009
    they are still young [​IMG] , just babies. they feel safe and secure in the nest, as they mature they will start to prefer the roost on their own. all of my chickens have always prefered to sleep cudled up together untill they are older, then one by one will move up to the roosts, i found that if you block the nest boxes they just pile together on the floor in a corner untill they are redy for the roosts [​IMG]
  4. BellevueOmlet

    BellevueOmlet Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    I kept my nesting box blocked off until they were about 18 weeks old so that they got used to sleeping on the roost. They are creatures of habit and do not go in the nesting box. I don't know if it is a problem to let them in the nesting box but I don't want them pooping in them. Fortunately chickens are pretty easy to "train"
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2010
  5. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Yah, I don't mind the little extra cleaning out of one or two nest boxes, from the two girls who persist in sleeping in them. I think, when they get older, they'll move to the roosts just like everybody else. On their own time.

    If I had an egg business, with tons of chickens, it might be a bigger deal.

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