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Our chickens kept laying their eggs on the bottom of their hen house. It isn't good for the eggs to be laid outside of the nesting box for multiple reasons. They are at risk of getting broken, which can lead to the chickens eating the eggs and they are more likely to get pooped on.
We tried numerous things without results. Finally we decided to buy some porcelain eggs, which look and feel like real eggs. We placed them in the nesting boxes and added extra bedding for additional comfort.
After about a week, one of the chickens kicked the fake eggs out and laid her eggs the nesting box! The other chickens followed her lead and all of our eggs have been in the boxes ever since.
What a smart chicken! I can't wait to have my own.
If your chickens are not laying their eggs in the nesting box you can give this trick a try. Take a few of their eggs, mark them with an "x", and place them in the nesting box. Give your chickens a week or two, to see if they will get the hint.
Be sure that you have extra bedding in the nesting box too. They like to be comfy when laying their eggs.
When I was a young girl at home we had lots of laying chickens. The person who gathered the eggs each day knew to leave the one nesting egg and not get it. I could always tell which one it was. It looked dirtier and older than the fresh eggs. We left it there so the hen would know where to lay her egg.