Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Frugal Tuesday - A Floor Based Nesting Box

Every once in a while you run into a chicken who just doesn't like to leave the ground. Maybe due to a sore leg or just because that's where she likes to be. Chickens can really have a mind of their own. I think one of the reasons the egg eating started is due to one hen who was laying her eggs on the floor of the coop. It may have been a characteristic she arrived with or it may be due to the fact that she appears to have a sore leg. Not all the time as even though I only have three hens in the coop right now I often can't spot her because she only seems to limp sometimes. Whatever the case she doesn't like to leave the ground even though we have a ramp which goes up to the nest boxes and roosts.

To try to solve the problem of her just laying her egg any place on the floor I built a special nesting box. It was actually supposed to be a devise to capture the eggs before the egg eaters got to them but I was able to nab them quickly so it ended up being her special place. It's pretty simple really. All you need is a few bits of 2 x 4 and an old 5 gallon pail. Here's what I did.

Gather your tools. A few bits of lumber, 5 gallon pail, skill saw, hammer, awl, pencil and some screws.

Measure out the pieces of lumber to about the same width of the pail.

Cut them carefully with the skill saw

Screw them together. Here's where I made a bit of a mistake. (I haven't built anything myself in a while as Mountain Man usually does all the building.) The top board should actually over hang about an inch and a half. I solved my mistake but just putting a board underneath it in the coop but if I had to make another one I would remember to overhang it.

With the awl, or even a nail if you don't have one, make two holes in the pail where you will screw the pail to the board.

The girls checking it out. I know its not perfect but the nice thing about chickens is they don't care. 

I even put a golf ball in there so she would get the idea and she did. Every day there is a lovely egg laid there and none on the floor. 

Now to the reason this didn't work well as an egg catcher. If you look at the photo's of the finished project you will see it actually has wood in the back of the pail as well. It seemed so simple. The chicken lays the egg, the egg rolls to the back of the pail behind the wood and is mostly out of sight and much harder to peck at. The only problem is the sides of the pail are slippery and make it difficult for the chicken to get in and out. Not good! Especially for one with a sore leg! Oh well, it worked out perfectly for a nesting box. Maybe I should pretty it up now.... Hmm...  a bow perhaps? I know they don't care but I do like pretty things.

Also linked in to Sugar Bee Crafts and Mind Body and Soul blog hops.

1 comment:

  1. You've made a good job. Not because they're just a little creature we will forget their needs, as long as there is a chance let's take good care and provide for them.


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