What's the problem with hens sleeping in the nesting box?


Mine are slowly coming back. I'm in a warmer sunnier clime but I'm still only averaging about 3 eggs a day from 9 laying hens. At least they've gotten pretty reliable about those 3 in the last few weeks.

That keeps them ahead of my husband's daily breakfast and leaves me some for baking by the weekend. It will be nice when they hit a full head of steam tho!

You're in British Columbia? I have sometimes gotten to live in (North and West) Vancouver. Right on Georgia in the heart of the city too. I always leave a piece of my heart behind when I have to come home to Los Angeles.
Last edited:


We have one that does the same thing!! we pull her out every night but she may go back in after we leave. sometimes we block it off and open it in the morning before they start laying. the problem isn’t that the eggs themselves are poopy, but we have a roll away egg box and will end up with big clumps of poop in it, so it’s just annoying to collect the eggs/clean out all the time.
I can see that that would be an issue! :confused: Fortunately I don't have to deal with that. I am now, however, thinking of little balls of poo merrily rolling down the chute. :eek:


In the Brooder
Feb 21, 2020
SW Washington State
Hey all. I've been at this for about only 3 years, and am on my 2nd coop. My first coop was a kit with pretty standard laying boxes on each side accessed by lids on the sides of the coop. I used the shredded coconut pads and the poop seemed to fall deep into the fibers away from the eggs. No big deal with them sleeping in there.

Last summer I built a large (12x8) coop with tall walls and tall rafters. I decided to try a roll-away nesting box by BestNestBox. As long as the astro-turf pads are clean, the box is amazing. Clean eggs, and easy to collect. But the box is a very popular place to sleep, in spite of the ample roosting spots (most of which are higher than the laying box). If I remember to lift the perch bar that can block the entrance (and come back in the morning to put it back down), it's really nice. I would rather they keep out except to lay in order to prevent the eggs from rolling through or getting hung up on big goopy turds.

But, the astroturf pads are easy to shake clean too.


5 Years
Jun 28, 2014
My boxes are off the ground on a wall adjacent to the roost. I've had occasional hens that like to sleep in the nest, but they've always stopped on their own. They do poop in it at night, so if I happen to see them in there when everyone else is on the roost, I'll move them. It's just a sanitation issue for me.


In the Brooder
May 11, 2018
I wouldn't sweat it, every night I close up my coop there may be a chicken ,duck or even a cat sleeping in the boxes. Once morning comes everyone starts moving around and the eggs end up in the boxes just fine. They seem to figure it out.


Jan 7, 2016
Ben Lomond, California
I've noticed that some of mine really like to sleep in the nest boxes when they're molting. It may just be warmer for their poor little bald bodies to be in an enclosed space. So I let them do it, and most go back to the roosts once they've feathered out again. I have two right now though who have made it their sleeping place of choice. I usually gather eggs before dark and I clean the coop every morning, so it's not a big deal to me. I do keep an eye out though to make sure they're just in there to sleep and not because they've gone broody. Unless it's a chick-adding year, that earns them a trip to the broody cage for a few nights. I think some of it just comes down to how relaxed you are about poop.
Top Bottom