Why aren't my young chickens interested in their nest box, yet?

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A hen sits on her nest with eggs

Your chickens will probably not be interested in the nesting boxes until it is time to lay. Even then, it may take them a while before they understand what nest boxes are.

Some breeds are good about finding nesting boxes very quickly. For instance, Rhode Island Reds and Speckled Sussex are always very good about laying in their nest boxes from the start. By contrast, we find Easter Eggers took longer. And Silkies often refused nest boxes, instead laying eggs in the bedding in a dark corner of the coop.

A chicken egg lays on the ground - sometimes chickens don't lay in a nest box

Keep in mind that your Orpingtons may not begin laying eggs until they are 24 weeks old or so. They really have another two or three months. In fact, you don't WANT your hens to be too interested in their nest boxes prematurely. Because at this point they have no instinct to lay.

Instead, if they decide to hang out in the nest boxes, they will just poo in there and soil them. It is for that reason that many people don't introduce nest boxes to a new flock until a few weeks before they expect their birds to begin laying.