G'Day .. I hope I can describe the behaviour without droning on for paragraphs I have tried Googling a few 'tags' but no luck .. over to the experts (thats you guys!) I have 3 x bantams who all started laying within the last month or so. They reside at Casa Del Chookie and have a large Chateau for sleeping and nesting, a dirt spa and a 2.5 metre covered run for when I am at work and they can't free range. Whenever I am home they supervised free range in the garden. So, my problem is, when they are confined to their Chateau and run, they appear to lay their eggs without much drama, same corner of the nesting box. Admittedly, I am usually at work and don't see what goes on but even on the weekends before letting them out to free range I have gone out and collected freshly laid eggs which would have been laid that morning (2 hours). The problem is, when they are supervised free ranging the egg laying seems to turn into a frustrating exercise for both them and us. Two of them on separate weekends have wandered around the garden for hours, looking like they are having trouble laying. They wander into areas that they don't normally go to, they seem disorientated/stressed looking for somewhere to lay or appearing to have trouble laying, panting/stressing. They still have access to the nesting box and will jump up there for a while like they are going to lay and then jump down again, back to the disorientated/stressed behaviour. This can go on for hours and when they finally do lay the egg, always in the nesting box, they revert back to normal and happily dig and peck in the garden. As mentioned, this appears to only be an issue when they are not confined. I wonder if the laying hen just doesn't want to sit in the nesting box because her two companions are having fun in the sun? They appear to be healthy and are definitely well fed and very happy girls. Has anyone else seen this type of behaviour? Any ideas on what is going through their little chicken heads?