Egg laying is a private affair so our nesting boxes must be in an isolated area and offer a safe and comfortable spot for our chooks to lay their eggs.
The nesting boxes should also allow ease of collection and importantly, be simple to clean out.
How big should nesting boxes be?
Typically about 12” all around or would easily fit your fattest chook. They need to contain deep cushiony nesting material.
Make a Rollaway Nesting Box
There are lots of great ideas and plans for making different styles of nesting boxes using a myriad of materials.
On our Natural Chicken Health YouTube Channel we show you how to build a double rollaway nesting box from recycled pallets!!
Our Top Tips
- It’s very handy to be able to get to your eggs without going into the pen/coop every day so if you can build your nesting boxes through the wall and better still into another shed or garage and are able to open them from the back or top – it beats getting chook poop on your shoes or having to brave the elements on a cold wet day!
- It is good to have a strip along the bottom front of the nesting box to stop the nesting material from being scuffed out, but leave a gap under the strip so that you can sweep dust and poop out.
- You could hang a burlap (curtain strips) over the front of each nesting box for added privacy. This also seems to stop chickens from sleeping in their nests overnight.
- Keep your nesting boxes relatively close to the ground and certainly lower than your perches. If they are up high they can tend to sleep in them and they get poopy.
- If you have just a few chooks they can all share the same nesting box as they don’t lay their eggs all at the same time, will happily queue or dosh in together!
- If your nesting boxes are internal, put a sloping top on the box to stop your chickens from roosting on top of the nesting box. Since chickens poop a lot while they sleep, this creates a mess directly under wherever they roost, so it is a good idea to think about the design of the overall chicken coop.
- There are many options and combinations of material that we can use for nesting boxes including pine needles, dry grass, wood shavings, dried leaves, hemp fibre, shredded paper, etc. The nesting material needs to be DRY and not hollow so that bugs can’t live in the stems.
- When we change our nesting box material we add a couple of handfuls of fresh aromatic leaves from the garden such as rosemary, lavender, lemon verbena, to deter bugs both in the nest and on the chooks – don’t put too many in or they will go moldy. Great also to sprinkle a handful of Diatomaceous Earth around the box and through the nesting material to ward off pests.
✅You can buy cheep Australian organic, fine, Food Grade, Diatomaceous Earth online from our online store here
✅Remember to keep Super Mash up to your chooks!
Natural Chicken Health – Super Mash is a natural feed supplement to to help keep your chooks healthy all year round.
Chicken owners can grab a bag of Super Mash at 35 stockists across, SE NSW, Gippsland and ACT, or buy online from our Webstore
Treat your chickens well – they’ll love you for it and lay great eggs!
Find out more, order online and check for a stockist near you at https://naturalchickenhealth.com.au/