Training new layers

MicroMaverick

In the Brooder
Nov 13, 2015
34
2
24
Inwood, Iowa
I have a small flock of 38 birds that I hatched June 12, 2015. They're about the age where they should start laying and I finished their coop 2 weeks ago. Should I put fake eggs in some of the nesting boxes to make sure they know where to lay their eggs, or see if they figure it out on their own?
 

azygous

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Dec 11, 2009
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Colorado Rockies
Are you supplementing light in the coop? If not, you may not see these young pullets reach point of lay until the days begin lengthening again, sometime after the new year. It often requires exposure to at least twelve hours of light per day to stimulate the egg laying hormones. It doesn't require much wattage to achieve this, even a 60 watt bulb will do.

If you do supplement light, it's best to set it on a timer to come on two hours before sun rise.

Salting the nest boxes with some fake eggs is a great way to get the hint across that these places are good egg laying spots. Even though they may not be ready to produce eggs right now, they may start exploring the nest boxes and playing house in them, all normal learning behavior.
 

oldhenlikesdogs

I Love Autumn
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Jul 16, 2015
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I have always put fake eggs in the boxes to draw them in, so I would recommend them, I haven't really found that light affects the first season of laying too much, they might be up to a month behind and don't really become consistent until February or March but most of my June hatched chicks will start by December.
 

Pork Pie

Flockwit
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Jan 30, 2015
58,323
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If a hen decides that somewhere other than a nest is a good place to lay, i simply pick them up and put them in the nest -they soon get the idea.

CT
 

MarySue

Songster
6 Years
Jul 24, 2015
206
195
176
Sedro-Woolley, WA
I have a pullet that is going into the nest, sitting awhile, leaves the nest, sings her egg song, goes to get a drink and then poops...an egg. Any ideas if she'll mature past this?
 

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