Stubborn Nest Box Sleeper

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Z_chicken, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. Z_chicken

    Z_chicken Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 12, 2009
    Southern California
    I'm new to chickens and confused.

    I have a 4 1/2 month old EE who insists on sleeping in a nest box. High, low, or brightly lit til late at night, she's stubborn about it. I've resorted to removing the nest box from the coop and replacing it late, after she's gone to sleep. That's worked for about a week, but last night, just before the automatic coop door closed, she found an outside nest box and for the first time entered it. I have golf ball in there to inspire her and again for the first time, rather than stepping all over it, she nudged it in the right place and sat on it... and settled in for the night!! The sun went down; the coop door closed. When I went to put her in the coop, she made broody noises at me... sitting there on her golf ball having never laid before. What's going on?

  2. bragabit

    bragabit Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 26, 2009
    Southern Utah
    We have a BR that insists on sleeping in the nest box too. How did you build or where did you find your automatic door closer?
  3. #1California Chick

    #1California Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 5, 2008
    SF Bay Area
    You might try taking the box out of the coop for a while.

    Also, some people come out and put the chicken on the roost at night.

    You really want to break her of this habit before she starts laying or you will have poopy eggs.
  4. BawkinOnTheBench

    BawkinOnTheBench Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 13, 2008
    We cut a piece of carboard from the 2 sides of a box, keeping the corner. It fit perfectly across the openings of our 3-seater nest box - part rested on top and part fell completely across the openings. We would put this over the nest boxes late in the day, but before it got dark, so they couldn't get into the nest boxes at night. Then, when everyone was on the roost, we would remove the cardboard so the nests would be open in the mornings. We only had to do this for perhaps 4-5 weeks before our pullets who had been sleeping there got the idea that they were supposed to sleep on the roosts.
  5. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    I put empty feed sacks, all crumpled up, in my nest boxes when the girls go in the coop at night (or just before that), and remove them in the morning. This way, they are open during the day for when they DO begin to lay, but closed off at night time. (Sidebar: golf balls didn't convince my girls wher to lay...they weren't "believable" enough, I guess. I bought some wooden eggs from the local craft store, and they treat them all just like real eggs.)
  6. Chicky Tocks

    Chicky Tocks [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2666.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Ru

    Oct 20, 2008
    Benton, Arkansas
    [​IMG] It must be an EE thing! We're having the same problem. Our nest boxes are up a ramp from the inside of the coop. We have two nice boxes that open from the outside of the coop and inside of each box is lots of straw, and would be large enough for two very nice sized nest. As it is, the chickens only lay on one side because the EE's have been sleeping in and pooping up the other side. I've seen them on the roost and don't understand why they sleep in the straw instead of on the roost like good chickens should do.

    Someone here said that I could hang a dark curtain over the entry of the nest boxes and that would keep them from going in them to sleep at night. If I could keep them out of that one nest, I'd set it up for my broody and give her a few eggs out of my incubator!
  7. Z_chicken

    Z_chicken Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 12, 2009
    Southern California
  8. Z_chicken

    Z_chicken Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 12, 2009
    Southern California
    Quote:Mine used to sleep on the roost until there was a box in the coop. Since then, she won't go on the roost even when there is no nest box. Instead, she'll pile on the floor in the straw with the silkies.

    But what worries me is now that there is no nest access in the coop, she's chosen to sleep outside and across the yard in an outside nest.

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