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Weak or thin egg shells

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
We have two hens, Annie and Lily. Annie was a pullet we got in April 2013. She starting laying in September 27, 2013 and has laid for two years without going into a molt. My other hen, Lily, same age molted last winter and laid her last egg on Dec 19, 2013 and started back on Feb 11,2014. Annie is now slowing down to 2 eggs a week with very thin shells. One was in the nest with a partially completed shell even though I provide oyster shells for them in two different areas of their outside and inside run. She doesn't appear to be losing feathers as Lily did.
My question is whether she is molting, not eating her oyster shells, or is she sick?
She doesn't act sick and eats her layer crumbles and scratch just fine.
post #2 of 4
Sometimes older hens have trouble towards the end of the laying season with making strong eggshells, they just seem to be worn out, they will pull the calcium out of their bones and body during egg laying, and they can't eat enough oyster shells to compensate.

That's why I like for my hens to have a proper molt and a recovery period, I don't try to bring them back into lay with lights and I let them do it on their own time.

Your hens just need a good rest, hopefully they will both get to molting, some years I have some late molters that don't start until November. It can help to up the protein in their diets by adding things or switching rations.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
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Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #3 of 4
I agree older hens at the end of their season might start to slow production and lay thin egg shells. You should also let them recover from molting on their own time. Not much u can do in the meantime.
Edited by barneveldrerman - 9/25/15 at 7:47am
The key to a happy flock is to be there for them. You have to do your job so they can do theirs. Your coop layout is also important. It doesn't have to be fancy just functional.http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/just-a-chicken-coop Is an example of it.
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The key to a happy flock is to be there for them. You have to do your job so they can do theirs. Your coop layout is also important. It doesn't have to be fancy just functional.http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/just-a-chicken-coop Is an example of it.
Reply
post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 
I never understood why one molted last year and this one did not. She probably is very tired. I didn't try to bring the other one out of molt, I just gave her more protein to help her grow her feathers back. She is fine. This one didn't stop laying all through winter last year which surprised me. She is only losing feathers around her comb right now whereas the other one looked so pitiful because she lost so many feathers during her molt. I'll try adding some nutrients to her food to help her through.
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