Will they share?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MattalynsBarn, Oct 13, 2010.

  1. MattalynsBarn

    MattalynsBarn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 11, 2010
    I have 8 16 week old pullets and 3 nesting boxes, and I was wondering, if 4 hens lay overnight what happens? Will they lay if there's already an egg in the box? I suppose this is a silly question seeing as you put golf balls or ceramic eggs in the boxes to show them where to lay, but now that I'm waiting the unendurable wait I'm coming up with all kinds of questions.

    Thank you much!
  2. Baymule

    Baymule Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 1, 2010
    Northeast Texas
    I see posts here where all the hens want the same box. So, I didn't even put a divider in mine, it is 32" long. They made 2 nests in the hay, but only lay in one spot. Goofy girls.
  3. Rachel'sFlock

    Rachel'sFlock Chillin' With My Peeps

    My girls don't mind laying in a nest with an egg or eggs already in it.
    Seems they prefer it, even!
    Unless you have light in the coop all night, they shouldn't be laying overnight.
    As anxious as you are to have eggs, it seems unlikely you will leave eggs in the nests overnight which were laid late in the day.
    It is my understanding that one nest is needed for every 4 hens, so, in theory, you have enough nests for 12 girls. Your 8 should be fine.

    Brightest Blessings!
  4. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Yes, you have plenty of nests. They probably will not use them all. They don't lay during the night, and you should not let them sleep in the nest boxes, because you will have poopy eggs.
  5. CoupeDeVille

    CoupeDeVille Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 2, 2010
    New Hartford, Ct.
    Quote:I'm exactly the same as you, 8 hens and 3 boxes. Yes, they will share the same box, I've had two trying to get into the same box and/or a lot of squawking if one doesn't hurry up ! [​IMG]

    Just the other day, I had all 8 eggs in one box !!
  6. Ineggsperienced

    Ineggsperienced Out Of The Brooder

    May 9, 2010
    Mine 5 share a 1 foot by 4 foot nest box, 4 lay in one end and 1 in the opposite one. Always in the same spot. I can tell because my only barred rock girl lays a light pink brown egg and the golden comet girls all lay darker golden brown eggs in the opposite side of the nest box [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2010
  7. carrlr

    carrlr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2010
    Southern Illinois
    I have 12 girls and 4 boxes. For the longest time they all just layed in the same box. I'd tried keeping golf balls in the other three boxes hoping to encourage them. I came across some colored easter eggs when cleaning out the garage. I placed a couple in each of the unused nest boxes and by the next day they are usuing all four boxes. I'm still getting more in their original favorite, but they now use the others too. Perhaps they just wanted someone else to try it first. LOL!
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2010
  8. MattalynsBarn

    MattalynsBarn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 11, 2010
    Wow, such wonderful stories!!!! hahahah silly chickens <3
  9. tuesdays chicks

    tuesdays chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 26, 2010
    stuart florida
    I have a broody hen sitting in a nest and they all seem to want to lay in her nest, so no you don't have to worry about it, they don't usually lay at the same time either.
  10. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    Honey, its a nesting box, not a parking spot! The ladies love to share - once a hen lays an egg in that nesting box, the box becomes twice as attractive to the others. The more the merrier!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by