When to set up the nest boxes?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by ladynewtochicks, May 24, 2016.

  1. ladynewtochicks

    ladynewtochicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    247
    19
    68
    Mar 21, 2016
    Montana
    I'm just curious when is the earliest you can expect them to lay? I currently have my nest boxes inaccessible in an effort to train them to sleep on the roost. When should I set it up and lower the ramp? I have a very mixed flock, 3-8 weeks old, EE BO SLW SS australorp, d'uccle, light brahma and cuckoo Marans...
     
  2. Chickenmanjim7

    Chickenmanjim7 Chillin' With My Peeps

    123
    8
    61
    Sep 16, 2015
    Aberdeen, Washington
    Most Hens start laying around the 20 week mark. Depending on breed, time of year etc it could be up to 30 weeks. It also depends on the individual chicken. I had a buckeye that waited what seemed like forever before she started laying. I usual put the nest boxes out around 14
    week mark so they can get used to them being in the coop and know they are there.
     
  3. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,131
    255
    226
    Sep 2, 2014
    North Canton, Ohio
    Some of my 1st gen hens layed their eggs as early as 16 wks, some 18 wks and the other almost nearly 22wks. I 2x @Chickenmanjim7 you can put up the nests @14 so they can get used to them and normally they start scouting nest spots when they are getting ready.
     
  4. ladynewtochicks

    ladynewtochicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    247
    19
    68
    Mar 21, 2016
    Montana
    Ok thanks for the replies [​IMG]
     
  5. hawcreek chicks

    hawcreek chicks Just Hatched

    10
    0
    14
    Feb 1, 2017
    I am new to chickens and just setting up the Coop. They are about 2.5 months now. I've read that once the hen poops in the nesting box, they won't lay in it. I am using a pre-fab built coop and run from Tractor Supply. It has 3 nesting boxes. Do I block off the boxes to prevent pooping or sleeping in them or do I leave them set up? Do you need to train the pullets?

    thanks!
     
  6. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,131
    255
    226
    Sep 2, 2014
    North Canton, Ohio

    To avoid poop in the nest you should block them off until they're 16-18 wks. It's not necessary that they will not lay if there's poop in the nests, they will lay in there, except you don't want dirty eggs and have a habit of sleeping in the nest.
    Training is putting fake eggs in their boxes, you'll entice them but they will train themselves. I still have one hen that will only lay in the corner of the coop and she buries them all the time under the beddings.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by