With a lot of emphasis now laid on the healthiness of grass-fed chicken, you should know the steps to build your chicken nest. Because, truly, the backyard chicken is easy & cheap to maintain and will provide you with healthy eggs daily BUT only if there’s a good nesting box.
By the way, the recent resurgence of backyard poultry is a consequence of the increasing return to self-sufficiency & homesteading.
Note that while you can build your personal, small-scale quail farm or do something else & reap impressive rewards, chicken rearing remains the first practice to indulge in when assuming your first steps towards self-reliance.
Here are 4 Steps to Build Your Chicken Nest
First off, before getting to the steps for building your chicken coop, you should know that your nesting box must possess three key elements, which are:
- Quiet; &
Setting up a chicken nest without these elements may mean wastage as your chickens will hardly be comfortable in it. And your chickens will NOT lay eggs in a place they find uncomfortable.
Working Out the Appropriate Size
Before you start the project, you must be sure of the size of your nest & know how many to construct. Let’s start with how many boxes you need to make.
A general rule of thumb is to house four hens in 1 nesting box, so if your flock is up to 30 hens, you’re making 7-8 boxes.
Now, onto the size, put in mind that your coop has to be spacious & comfortable enough for your hens to appreciate it. So, you need to make some measurements beforehand. My typical measurements for regular chickens are 12” tall by 12” wide and 12” deep. You can work out the inches for larger chickens using this template.
Selecting the Ideal Location
Having worked out the sizes of your boxes & how many you’ll be needing, you have to find the right location for them as available space influences what you do. There are two typical options: to affix these boxes to your existing coop or make an independent box.
If the existing coop fulfills the three requirements expected of a nest, I always prefer to add the new boxes to it since chickens like familiarity & are creatures of habit.
Designing Your Nest
Your chickens don’t care if their box is beautiful or ugly. All they care about is size & comfort. Most of the time, a wooden box divided into segments works well. However, if you wish, particularly if the boxes will be standalone, you can always apply some creativity to your designs.
Building the Box
Chickens are not fussy. Just make sure that the boxes meet all three requirements mentioned above & are spacious enough for them to live in. Try as much as you can to reduce the presence of light in the boxes, keep them quiet & ensure not everyone has access to them.
I guess you’ll use wood for the construction. So, I advise that you sand the edges & remove the splinters to protect the chickens from cuts.
Remember to build in a lid through which you can easily reach your eggs.
Concluding The Steps to Build Your Chicken Nest
The last of the steps to build your chicken nest is training the hens to use the boxes. This starts with an introduction. The base of the box should be lined with straw to foster convenience & familiarity. In case the chickens appear reluctant to occupy their new homes, you can add some feed inside the boxes to encourage them.