Originally Posted by cjpines
My husband wants to keep the light in the coop from 7Am to 11 Am . Reason, we have 4 newbies that will start laying in mid Dec. They are 5 months old and no signs of laying.
We're in Calif with the drought and have plenty of sunlight. He want's to get them going.
What is your take, please.
Sometimes first year layers will lay all winter without supplemental lighting, sometimes they won't. Yours may just be too young to lay yet.
Older layers need 14-16 hours of light to lay regularly thru winter. Mine comes on early in the morning to provide 14-15 hours of light and they go to roost with the natural sundown. I started ramping my light up back in early Sept, but my yearlings still almost all are molting now.
The light should be increased slowly, a drastic and abrupt change in lighting can cause stress and undesired consequences.
Here's a pretty good article on supplemental lighting. Some folks think that using lighting shortens the years a hen will lay, I don't agree with that theory but I also plan to cull my older hens for soup at about 3 years old.
Edited by aart - 10/31/15 at 8:13am