Most Back yard chicken enthusiasts are very familiar with the wooden nest box that comes pre-attached to the coop or a Do-It-Yourself wooden box. However many back yard farmers are not aware of metal nest boxes and particularly roll out or roll away nest boxes. The goal of this blog is to inform about the roll away nest box and then compare to the wood box.
ROLL OUT METAL NEST BOX
Our SKA roll out nest boxes is made out of zinc coated metal and designed to last a life time no matter the weather. At first glance these nest boxes look cold, sterile, and well down right not 'farmy'.
A hen would not want to lay her eggs in one of these! In fact the opposite is true. Once the hens familiarize themselves to the nest, they will not lay anywhere else, unless they become broody and that is a subject for another blog. The metal nests provide the privacy, feeling of safety the hens want. Once the egg is laid, it will automatically roll out to the front collection box for safe keeping until it is collected. Collection is quick, easy and ensure clean and unbroken eggs every time.
Inside the roll away nest boxes are the plastic nest inserts. The shape of the insert conforms to the hen's body and warms up quickly. The perforations on the bottom allow any poop to fall through and it encourages the hen's natural nesting behavior of scratching to form the nest. No bedding is needed making the metal roll out nest box cleaner and easy to clean.
The wooden perch on the front of the nest box also folds up which is a great feature to keep the hens from sleeping in the boxes. After all, chickens do almost 50% of their pooping while they are asleep, and that makes for incredibly messy nest boxes
WOOD NEST BOXES
If you already have a chicken coop or have been researching getting chickens for the backyard, you are already familiar with this type of nest box
Either your chicken coop came with a 'bump out' nest box or perhaps you are handy and made your own, the consummate DIY.
The Bump out on the chicken coop does have some convenience to it. Most of them will have a lift up top so you can have access to the eggs
Now I get it, the bump out or wooden nest boxes look natural, something that belongs on the farm and a nest that hens will prefer and expect. But this is where you are wrong. As owners of animals and pets it is a very common mistake to look at the animal's situation or condition and apply what we, as humans, think the animal would like. And 9 times out of 10 we are wrong. I am not saying the traditional nest box is one of these mistakes but it does have quite a few disadvantages to consider
- Wood nest boxes are almost always attached to the coop structure meaning they are a permanent fixture making them to clean.
- Laid eggs remain in the nest until they are collected giving ample time for the eggs to pecked, stepped or pooped on
-Wood nest boxes must have some bedding in them usually wood shavings or sometimes hay. This is an extra, on-going cost. While this does look comfy for the birds it is an extra expense for your coop, attracts insects like mites, makes a mess once pooped on and then needs to be frequently cleaned out, and really cannot be washed down and sanitized.
-The insect attraction and contamination is of particular concern as there have been recent outbreaks of bacterial and viral infections that have spread across backyard chicken coops. So biosafety of your coop should be a consideration and our metal nest boxes make this just a little bit easier.
I know I am bias, but that is how I see it! :-)