Store bought nest boxes

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by CrappieSlayer34, Oct 14, 2014.

  1. CrappieSlayer34

    CrappieSlayer34 In the Brooder

    Feb 19, 2014
    Ok I got a couple of little giant nest boxes. Chickens are not interested in them at all. They prefer their old wooden boxes that I made.

    There are lots of good reviews on them. Are they like a lot of online reviews. Are they just trying to sell stuff. Lol.

    But anyways my girls don't like them. They have not even tried them at all.

    Maybe I should try some fake eggs in them.

    Anyone else tried those grey plastic store bought nest boxes. They are not cheap. Could have got a lot of good plywood and made a ton of boxes for what the 5 of them cost.
  2. hennible

    hennible Crowing

    I think it will just take time for them to adjust. Fake eggs would help as well as removing the old ones or blocking them off.
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Chickens are creatures of habit. Nests certainly fall into that area. Once they start laying somewhere they don’t want to change the nest. It’s their instinct to always lay in the same place once they decide where that place is.

    I don’t know why you want them to switch or the physical layout of your coop. It’s hard to have specific suggestions without fully understanding the problem. You are right. You could have built perfectly good nests for a lot less than those five cost you as long as you have just a tiny bit of building skills and a few tools. It would not have bothered the chickens at all.

    I’d put fake eggs in the new nests no matter what else I did. I’ve seen enough to be convinced fake eggs do help. I use golf balls but several other things work. This probably will not be enough on its own to cause them to switch but it’s a start. Don’t expect immediate success but maybe over time.

    You can try blocking off or removing the old nests. They might switch to the new ones but I think they are likely to just keep laying in the same area as the old nests. The closer the new nests are to the old nests the more likely this is to work.

    From what I saw online, you cannot lock a hen in your new ones. Maybe you could devise a way. When I have a hen laying on the coop floor instead of in my nests, I catch her on her nest in the floor and lock her in a nest I want her to use. I leave her locked in there until she lays her egg. That normally takes about a half hour but have had a hen take as long as three hours. I usually only have to do that once but have had some that took twice, two days on a row, before they caught on and made the switch.

    You could maybe take out the old nests and provide a moveable nest in that location, say a cardboard box or cat litter pan. If they get used to using that as a nest, gradually move it toward your new nests. Once they are used to laying in the area of your new nests, remove the moveable nest and see if they make the switch.

    Getting them to switch nests can be kind of challenging but if you want to bad enough and are willing to patiently work at it, you can do it. But there is a reasonable chance they will want to lay in some other place when you start messing with their laying.

    Good luck!

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