In the Brooder
- Jul 23, 2010
My flock of 5 free-range in my backyard just about every day. Most of them have already done their laying by the time I let them out of their coop...except for one. In our backyard we have a shed that doesn't latch completely and usually ends up being ajar even when you think you've gotten it latched. It usually goes unnoticed, but the other day with lots of wind I noticed the door was wide open so I shut it and propped something up against it so it wouldn't blow open again. The next day one particular hen was acting very uncharacteristic. She hopped the fence by the shed 3 times (she never went very far and usually just paced in the area outside of our yard very confused-like). I opened the shed to look for something and found a couple eggs in a little make-shift nest of leaves on the floor and then on top of a stack of yard chairs inside a dirt-filled planter were more eggs! Who knows how long they'd been in there! As soon as there was a clear path she immediately elbowed her way past me and into the shed, climbed and jumped her way up to this forgotten planter at the top of a mountain of lawn chairs. That's all she wanted! To get inside the shed to her secret laying place! Her behavior then made perfect sense to me and she's been her normal self ever since. However, I don't want to keep this shed ajar all winter just for her to lay eggs in. I worry about other animals finding it a cozy place to hang out in the winter. But if I close the shed she behaves erratically and jumps the fence! Any ideas on how to curb this behavior??