Nest Box Needs

Nest Box Needs
Nest Box Needs

Having fresh eggs is probably part of your grand plan for having chickens and the nest box is an important aspect of making that happen.

The first thing you need to know is how many nest boxes you will need. You need one nest box for every four chickens. If you have twelve chickens you are going to need three nest boxes.

“Can’t I just make some nest boxes out of plywood and call it good?” I hear you ask. The short answer is yes, you can. However, not all nest boxes are created equally. There are some differences between them. Let’s go into what makes a good nest box.

  • They should be sturdy and fastened to the wall properly.
  • The tops should be slanted so the birds can’t perch on top of them.
  • They should be ventilated so that they are nice and dry. Remember, a dry coop is a clean coop and clean coops make for healthy chickens. That goes for nest boxes too.
  • They should be large enough for your birds to get in and turn around.
  • They should be in the darkest or safest place in the coop—this encourages the birds to lay in their “safe” spot, and it will make it easier for you to find the eggs.
  • They should be easy to clean and sanitize. Some nest boxes come with perches that flip up and block the nest, this is to help you prevent your birds from developing the habit of sleeping in the nest boxes and soiling them. This small feature can really help keep your eggs clean.

Can’t I just buy nest boxes?

The best nest boxes in my opinion are the roll-out nest boxes. These meet all the criteria of a good nest box but also have a “roll out” feature, meaning when bird lays the egg, it rolls out of the nest into a separate compartment. This is important because then your eggs won’t get dirty, and most importantly they won’t get eaten by your birds.

Chickens eat eggs? Yes they do, and once they eat one they find out how nutritious and delicious they are, they will continue to eat them. So it’s best to protect your eggs with a roll-out design.

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