Tuesday, August 11, 2009


The ladies are just about 18 weeks old. This means they are ALMOST ready to start laying eggs. The general consensus seems to be that they will start laying when they are between 20-24 weeks old. (By general consensus I mean the opinions and wisdom of strangers off the internet, as we don't know anybody else who has chickens.)

This is both exciting (this is the reason we got the chickens in the first place!) and daunting. Chickens can apparently be a little wacky when it comes to their egg laying habits. First of all, I'm supposed to somehow train them to only lay eggs in their nest box. The nest box is the convenient little compartment on the side of their Eglu, where I can ideally just open the hatch from the outside and collect my egg. Sounds simple, right? 

However, I'm not sure how to train them to do this. They now free range around the backyard. I feel sorry for them if they have to stay in their cage all day long, so they are given free reign to flap their wings around our small urban plot. Although small, our yard does offer places for wily chickens to lay their eggs unnoticed, such as the two raised beds which house herbs and the rather large and overgrown pumpkin patch. The prospect of an Easter egg hunt every single day sounds really unappealing, so I'm just hoping they have some sort of instinct to pop those eggs out in the proper area.  I'll keep you posted. 


  1. Ah, have the wise ones not told you of the old "fake egg" trick? You put something that looks like an egg in the nest so the hen will want to lay there. Hens are jealous so once they notice the "egg", most of them will decide that the nest is perfect.

    I love Omlet, don't you? They make the best hen houses.

  2. Thanks for the fake egg tip! I will try that. I also ADORE my Eglu / Omlet - it's so easy to clean!

  3. My Los Angeles chickens are 8 weeks old so a ways off but the prospects of their eggs is so exciting! I have 2 easter eggers so anxious to see if I am lucky enough to be graced with green or blue eggs. My other is an australorp so expecting big things from her. :-)

    And the Omlet Cube is everything I had hoped! It's so easy I almost think I'm doing it wrong. I got worried at first when the girls' first trip into the roost resulted in one getting their leg stuck in the roosting bars. They have sorted it all out now.

    Watching your blog for those first eggs! I feel like I'm following in your pioneer footsteps.

  4. Hi Seth...Maude is an easter egger so I'm hoping to get some fun colored eggs, too! Have you read Farm City by Novella Carpenter? My small garden and chicken project is nothing compared to her exploits in Oakland!