In preparation for our hens to start laying, my husband did some research about nest box sizes and styles, and built a set of nest boxes for our chickens out of pallet wood. The front of the boxes is eight inches high with a one-and-a-half-inch ledge (to keep things inside) along the lower edge which narrows the opening to six-and-a-half inches. The height in the back, along with the width and length of each box is twelve inches. We thought they looked rather small for our hens, but bowed to the wisdom of long-standing chicken owners. Our nest boxes rest on a shelf made of pallet wood (originally made for storage in the garage and re-purposed for the chicken coop!) which is somewhat protected by a plastic feed sack. Not counting the shelf which I made some time ago, the nest boxes were made from the wood salvaged from two pallets which cost us two dollars each. Even throwing in the cost of the nails and the use of an electric saw, we still came out pretty good in the expense department! And it was done just in time! One of our reds is laying a little early. We were somewhat surprised to see her squeeze into the nest box like she had done so all her life, mold the hay into a suitable shape, and lay a beautiful brown egg!

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