Why does she do that?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by basicliving, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    I have 21 hens - all the same age and just over 24 weeks old. Four or five of them recently started laying over the past month or so. The ones laying are Golden Penciled Hamburgs and Phoenix.

    Everyone lays in the nest boxes except one little Phoenix. She will get in the nest box and fuss around, moving pieces of bedding here and there until she seems to get it just perfect. And then she will sit. And sit. And sit. Probably for about an hour. And then I will see her run out of the coop and into the chicken yard, and when I go to check, she's either layed her egg on the coop floor, or in the chicken run. She will not lay it in the nest box - even though she'll sit in there forever until right about the time she's going to lay it.

    I don't know if she just gets impatient and gives up, or why she jumps down just as she starts to lay the egg. They all free range, so I'm happy they go their boxes to lay and I wouldn't be concerned at all except that I've almost stepped on her eggs in the chicken run before realizing they are there.

    Each nest box has a fake egg in it - and most of the hens move the fake egg under them and sit on it until they lay. I've even seen this one do it, although she doesn't do that all the time. They get black oil sunflower seeds for treats each day, oyster shell free choice, and are otherwise only fed Layena and what they find free ranging.

    She is a new layer, so maybe it's just taking her longer right now and she finally figures it ain't happening so she jumps down relaxed and the egg pops out?

    Any one ever experience this? If so, were you able to break her of it or did she eventually just figure it out on her own?

    Thanks in advance,
    Penny
     
  2. kinnip

    kinnip Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2008
    Carrollton, GA
    I have a BR who does this. I think she just gets bored waiting in the little box. Eventually she'll jump up on the nursery coop (it's empty now) where they like to sun themselves and lay an egg. Weird thing is she doesn't announce it like the others. I think it's a total surprise to her when that thing pops out.
     
  3. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    Thanks, Kinnip - it does bring me comfort that someone else is experiencing this! How old is your hen?

    Mine doesn't announce it either - and she really does act like it's a total surprise. It literally seems to just pop out of her while she's walking.

    Maybe after she's been layer a little while longer, they will come more quickly and she'll actually be in the nest box when she lays. Like I said, my only concern is that I've almost stepped on the eggs as I never know where in the world she'll be when it pops out of her!

    Penny
     
  4. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    One of mine was doing that, but it passed. They're 25 weeks old and odd things can happen. Another jumped out of the box one morning and laid an egg by my foot so she could get a backrub![​IMG]
     
  5. Chicken Woman

    Chicken Woman Incredible Egg

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    Oct 16, 2008
    Montana
    One of my RIR was doing that so I saw her in the nsting box and moved a piece of screen over and blocked her in. I did this twice and she has learned to lay in nest box
     
  6. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

    938
    3
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    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    Quote:Good idea! I think I'll try that the next time I see her in the nest box. Thanks!

    Penny
     

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