1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

Why won't they use the nest box and how can we get them started?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Engteacher, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. Engteacher

    Engteacher Poultry, Poetry, and Prose

    Sep 1, 2009
    Hastings, MN
    My wellie hens were using the nest boxes just fine last fall. We moved the Welsummers into their own quarters and hung a nice nest box on the wall. It's at the same height as the one they used to use. They started laying on the ground. In late October, they took a break from egg laying and have enjoyed a long winter "vay-cay" until just last week. On Tuesday, we found our first egg in months. It was back in the corner on the floor of the coop. Three days later, another egg on the ground. I put an egg in the nestboox to entice them back, but it hasn't worked so far.

    What should I do?

  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Put a nest box in the corner where the egg was laid??
  3. TNBarnQueen

    TNBarnQueen Songster

    Oct 28, 2010
    East Tennessee
    I have scratching my head on this myself for some time. We just finished my hen house a few weeks ago. Put a nice 4 box stacked shelf with very enticing soft hay in each one. Most where using the bottom one then I noticed something one day. We put a shelf up over the top of the rack and one of the hens laid an egg there! So I stuck another box there. Now most use this top box and some still the bottom. NO ONE will use the middle ones. [​IMG]

    I can only guess that they are going to lay where THEY want to. I had the same problem you had til I built the house with them laying eggs on the ground..or...usually mud. Does not make a very pretty egg. Who knows what goes thru a chickens mind. I have a hen who sits constantly next to the nesting boxes staring at the hens who are trying to lay....don't know why but she sure enjoys watching![​IMG]
  4. kulangi

    kulangi Songster

    Jul 8, 2010
    I put white golf balls in my nest boxes and my pullets always go there to lay their eggs.
  5. Charlotte chicken mama

    Charlotte chicken mama In the Brooder

    Aug 2, 2010
    My easter egger refuses to lay in the nesting box even with a golf ball there. She insists on laying on the floor of the coop under the hanging food container. Today I found broken egg shell on the coop floor. No sign of the insides of the egg which leads me to believe they ate it which has me very upset. I don't know what to do to get the girl to lay in the nesting box.
  6. TNBarnQueen

    TNBarnQueen Songster

    Oct 28, 2010
    East Tennessee
    Quote:Funny you would mention eating the egg. I went to check the nesting boxes and noticed my Andalusion standing in the box pecking....she was eating one of the eggs! There was 5 in it but don't know if that had anything to do with it. A friend told me if chickens are eating eggs to blow an egg and fill it up with mustard. I am going to try it just in case. Hope this helps!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by