Staying out of the coop at night and egg laying....

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by smalltownchicks, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. smalltownchicks

    smalltownchicks Seven Silly Hens

    Jul 7, 2011
    Okay, if I ramble, I'm sorry. We have 7 hens (all diff breeds, you can see in my signature thing). They are all about 24 weeks. First, the eggs. I got my first egg on Monday. Since then, it's been 2-3 per day. All of the eggs have been behind the nest boxes with the nest boxes untouched with the golf balls inside:) No biggie, getting eggs is just about the coolest things ever I might add. I have some fake brown eggs that are being shipped so maybe that might help.
    The girls have always gone in the coop on their own. I decided to put in a poop board. It took a night or two but then they all came in, no problem. A week or so later I hung a heat lamp. I didn't turn it on, just put it in. Since then, 2 consistently, sometimes up to 4 don't come in the coop, they sleep in the run. My hubby thought maybe there wasn't enough room between the door in the floor and the poop board since they are getting bigger. The 2 that are consistently down are the orpington and brahma, both big girls. So, I removed the poop board and got a couple of more private nest boxes in anticipation to some egg laying. It looks perfect to me. Now, tonight 4 are down below. It's supposed to snow here tomorrow and I don't know what to do. I've put them in a couple of times but it kills me to bend in there and crawl around in poop, etc...
    So, will they eventually go in if they get too cold? Should I just be consistent and catch them all and make them go up until.....forever?
    The run is skirted with haybales so where they sleep is blocked by those. Hubby thinks maybe I should move them so the only "safe" feeling place is the coop.
    If you made it this far...Thanks!![​IMG]
  2. hemet dennis

    hemet dennis Chillin' With My Peeps

    Why put a heat lamp in unless it's 40 below you don't need heat, the nest boxes should be on the wall how can they lay eggs behind it ?
  3. smalltownchicks

    smalltownchicks Seven Silly Hens

    Jul 7, 2011
    Well, I didn't want it to be 40 below and put it in so I just wanted to have it ready. I have the nest boxes (2 hole wooden), cornered. I filled the hole behind the boxes with shaving and there the eggs are, right on top.
  4. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    They like to lay in hidden spots so as long as they can get to a hiding place behind the nest boxes, that is probably what they will use.

    I would remove the heat lamp. Does it get to 40 below were you live? When asking questions about managing your flock or coop, it helps if you add a location to your profile -- just something general, like the state, is plenty to tell what your climate is like.

    How wide is your roost? Sometimes you have to widen it to make it comfortable enough for them. The wide side of a 2x4 is a good approach.

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