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Low egg production

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I used to let my hens free tange but then we got a batch of crosses that were to dumb to back in at night so we started locking them in run. I have a few girls who know how to get out and I dont mind as long as the meat birds stayed in. Now that they are all processed we alstarted letting them free range again. Now i have gone from 7-10 eggs a day to 4-6 eggs. I locked them in the run today and only got 4. The usual ones escaped but they always used lay in the coop even when they escaped. Any Suggestions? They are only 6-7 months old. I searched for another nest but couldnt find anything. Now my dog has been chasing them and actually killed one a few days ago. Since then he has been leashed while outside. Maybe stress? Any suggestions are appreciated smile.png
post #2 of 9

The shorter daylight hours will definitely slow production. Pullets won't stop completely, but they can slow down. Stress is another big factor in production.

post #3 of 9
I have 5 hens.... 4 of them stopped laying. They are 7 months old. It makes me nervous.
post #4 of 9

The shouldn't be slowing down in production still being pullets and we've still 12 hours of light here along the Canadian border. They likely have made a nesting spot out where they free range. You locking them in (yet still can escape run) didn't change their minds where they wanted to lay.

 

If your coop is large enough then lock them in the coop for a few days. If not then either figure out how to stop them from escaping the run or find the free range nest. If you don't mind gathering eggs from that free range nest then don't fix your run. A way to keep birds in if your only using a non electric short fence is to trim the flight feathers on one wing.

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

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Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeissel View Post

I have 5 hens.... 4 of them stopped laying. They are 7 months old. It makes me nervous.
Its making me nervous too. I have a big family. I really dont want to go back to yucky grocery eggs. I have 6 isa browns in a brooder now. I dont expect them to lay until spring even though they should be laying in Janruary. Glad I got them now with the gorls slowing down so much. It only seems to be my EE my JG are still going strong.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Egghead_Jr View Post

The shouldn't be slowing down in production still being pullets and we've still 12 hours of light here along the Canadian border. They likely have made a nesting spot out where they free range. You locking them in (yet still can escape run) didn't change their minds where they wanted to lay.

If your coop is large enough then lock them in the coop for a few days. If not then either figure out how to stop them from escaping the run or find the free range nest. If you don't mind gathering eggs from that free range nest then don't fix your run. A way to keep birds in if your only using a non electric short fence is to trim the flight feathers on one wing.

Do you know a good article to teach me how to trim them? I dont mind them ranging I just dont want them laying somewhere else. They used to escape all the time and still layed in the boxes. I dont what has changed over the last week to make them stop laying there. It was 10 eggs one day and 4 the next. Makes no sense
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by kylen2007 View Post


Its making me nervous too. I have a big family. I really dont want to go back to yucky grocery eggs. I have 6 isa browns in a brooder now. I dont expect them to lay until spring even though they should be laying in Janruary. Glad I got them now with the gorls slowing down so much. It only seems to be my EE my JG are still going strong.

It's a controversial subject, but if you want your flock to lay through the winter, you'll have to give them extra light.  The recommendation is for a total of 14 hours of light/day.  Most folks provide the supplemental light in the morning.  But, I give mine to the flock in the evening.  I have it on a timer (7W CFL) so it goes on before dusk, and off around 7 PM.  I'll keep adding a bit each week until I get up to the 14 hour total.  B/c our winters are pretty gloomy, I'll also set the light to go on around 6 - 8 AM (we get up around 6 AM) and it will go off at 8 PM.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kylen2007 View Post


Do you know a good article to teach me how to trim them? I dont mind them ranging I just dont want them laying somewhere else. They used to escape all the time and still layed in the boxes. I dont what has changed over the last week to make them stop laying there. It was 10 eggs one day and 4 the next. Makes no sense

Do a google search for how to clip chicken wings.  You'll find more information than you'll ever care to look at.  Basically, you just trim the flight feathers on one wing.  Take off about 3 - 4". 

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply

Jesus Christ is my pilot.

My husband of 41 years is my best friend and co-pilot.

Enjoying my gardens.  My flock are my garden helpers.

Breeding a winter hearty flock with small combs and colored eggs.

Favorite breeds:  Dominique and EE.  Hatching addict.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1084432/egg-gender-selection-survey

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1013154/byc-member-interview-laz...

Reply
post #8 of 9
STRESS may be the problem in your case. Chickens will get scared when one dies or gets hurt. (They also get stresed from a lot of others things)They will start to lay eggs when they feel it is safe for them to continue. A dog attack will have definitely scared them. They will need time to recover from this event. Within a week your chickens should be almost back to normal.



Hope this helped!
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.
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post #9 of 9

I didn't even read that part about your dog. Yeah, that's likely a contributing factor. You can add lighting if you want but the pullet winter they usually don't slow down much. When I provided additional lighting we went with 12 hours total. They girls never skipped a beat in laying until the week long periods of no day above freezing for two weeks or more. No amount of extra lighting will counter lower egg production due to prolonged extreme cold.

 

http://files.backyardchickens.com/graphics/wingclipping.gif

One of many online overviews of trimming wings:

http://www.pocketfarm.co.uk/guide-to-wing-clipping-for-chickens/


Edited by Egghead_Jr - 10/9/15 at 6:14am

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply
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