When my husband makes animal shelters, he makes them like Fort Knox. He says itʻs because he learned from our early efforts (some of which fell down in bad weather) and wants them done forever. In any case, this chicken coop is made of hollow tile and the bottom half of it, at least, could be a bomb shelter.
At the moment, all those chickens are free range. We used to lock them up at night, but weʻve given up, and they just roost on the pipe rails of the horse and sheep stall. Heʻs luring them in daily with food, but some of them would rather snatch a few morsels of sheep feed than to get their full ration of layer pellet. Weʻd like them to come in at night where there are lovely egg boxes, so that they will be tempted to lay their eggs where we can find them. As it is, they lay more often than not in the forest (we think), where we canʻt find the eggs.
Itʻs frustrating to feed 20+ chickens and not be able to find the eggs.
At the beginning of the summer, we had plenty of eggs, but once they figure out we "found" the nest (sorry, ladies, but the corner of the horse stall is not very hidden), they move. Itʻs also possible that mongoose are getting some of the eggs, and, honestly, my dog Mellie could also be a culprit, but I never catch her at it anymore.... Wherever they are, whatever is happening to them, the eggs are not in my fridge, so that means weʻre feeding hens for nothing.
I keep threatening them with freezer camp, and amusingly, it seems that every time we have a school break, and I have the time to actually make good on my threat, the eggs magically appear. Letʻs hope it happens next week, when summer school is over, because I donʻt want to buy terrible store bought eggs.