Stopped laying in nest box

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by RBOutdoors, Feb 20, 2012.

  1. RBOutdoors

    RBOutdoors Songster

    Sep 4, 2009
    I have one EE that just laid an egg in my hibiscus pot. She had been laying in the boxes for weeks now and today I find her in the pot. It has been kind of rainy today and the pot is under cover but so are her nest boxes.

    Any thoughts? I know there isn't much you can do other than keep them penned up but hey, thought I'd ask.

  2. BroosterSpringsteen

    BroosterSpringsteen Songster

    May 15, 2011
    NW North Carolina
    My hens free range, and every so often, one or two of them will decide to start laying somewhere besides the box. I've found eggs in flower pots, wheel barrows, under bushes, and for a while, I had one particularly stubborn girl who wanted to lay eggs on top of the lawn mower in the shed. [​IMG]I usually notice a drop in the # of eggs in the nesting box, and then I'll start watching to see where the new spot is.

    What I usually do at that point is to always make sure there is an egg in the nesting box. When I go out to gather eggs, I always leave one. I mark it with a pencil so I know to grab it the next day, and leave a different fresh egg. As long as there are eggs in the box they lay there. It's also good to find the secret stash, because if the other hens find it, they might start laying there too, and the hen will keep going back as long as there are eggs. If I see the errant hen is ready to lay, sometimes I'll gently carry her to the box, and sit her on top of the eggs.
  3. K-12 Chickens

    K-12 Chickens Songster

    Oct 6, 2010
    My Black Star Blackie can be a stinker and she would disappear for the afternoon and then pop up out of nowhere.
    Or so I thought....
    She had a secret nest right by the chicken coop in a place I would NEVER look. There are two straw bales placed on either side of the chicken door on the small ends of the bales(vertically)wrapped in tarps. Well, she had been laying on one of the bales for quite a while because 7 good eggs(well, I didn't eat them because I had no idea how long they had been there) were on top of it when that place was looked at! Thankfully though, Blackie has resumed laying in the nest boxes. I think sometimes it can be an erratic thing.
    Maybe if you were to "mess up" her nest or put something in the nesting spot, maybe it would deter your EE from laying there again. I think after the eggs in Blackie's "secret nest" were discovered she thought, "Well, I guess my eggs will keep be taken if I keep laying here!"
  4. RBOutdoors

    RBOutdoors Songster

    Sep 4, 2009
    Well she is holding it till I let them out and then she makes a bee line for the flower pot to drop her egg. It is actually kinda of funny to watch. "gotta go gotta go gotta go right now!!"

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