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No eggs for the last few months

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Here's the scoop, as best as I can remember. We got 4 ducks at the end of March this year, 2 females (1 rouen, Penelope and one Pekin, Daisy), and 2 males (same breed as the females). I ended up having to remove one of the males because he was beating the other male up and drawing blood. Seeing as we really enjoy the eggs, I found a W/H female (Cami) sometime in May, she was supposed to be close to 4 months old when I got her. I was getting an egg a day on average from the Rouen and Pekin, until a few weeks after we got Cami. Started seeing a ton of feathers in the pen, and assumed they were just molting and egg production would resume in a few weeks. NOTHING!

 

I'm pretty sure my WH should be laying at this point in her life, and the other should be as well. the days are shorter now so maybe I need a light in the coop to extend the light to 14-16 hours/day? I feed them chicken layer pellets. I have put crushed oyster shell out before, but they didn't touch it. Please help!

post #2 of 7
Thread Starter 

Would this help? http://www.nutrenaworld.com/products/poultry/naturewise-poultry/feather-fixer/index.htm?utm_source=Backyard%20Chickens&utm_medium=banner&utm_campaign=Molt%20Bad%20Feather%20Month

post #3 of 7

If they are molting, you won't see eggs for 6 weeks or so.  You should be giving a little extra protein while they molt to help them grow healthy feathers - it is quite taxing on their little bodies.  Any change to the flock can cause a molt, any stress - like adding a flock mate can cause them to stop laying.  Do you live in a colder climate?  If they are all molting right now, there is a chance you won't see eggs for longer than usual, maybe as late as spring.  Do you light their coop at night?  With the days getting shorter, ducks without at least 14-16 hours of light a day will naturally stop laying.  I have 6 female ducks, and we are getting only 3-4 eggs a day right now.  One is old enough to lay, but hasn't started yet.  I am expecting her to start in the spring, as she isn't showing any signs of being ready to lay yet, and it's getting cold.  One of mine is molting - and before this, she was a very dependable one egg a day bird.  I expect her to start laying again in a few weeks, but I understand she may not start laying again until the spring. 

 

One other thought - could all of the feathers in the coop be from fighting?  If they are fighting at night, the stress would stop them from laying.  Is the pecking order still being worked out in the flock?  Did you introduce the new ducks slowly enough?  Please let me know what you think!

Learning through living with my 8 ducks -  1 Chocolate Runner, 1 Blue Runner, 1 Fawn and White Runner, 1 Khaki Campbell, 2 Welsh Harlequins and 2 Pekins
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Learning through living with my 8 ducks -  1 Chocolate Runner, 1 Blue Runner, 1 Fawn and White Runner, 1 Khaki Campbell, 2 Welsh Harlequins and 2 Pekins
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post #4 of 7

Yeah, sounds to me like they went through their yearly moult and egg production has stopped for the season. Ducks aren't like chickens, many of them only lay in the spring/early summer and that's it. So, you might have to wait for spring to get those yummy eggs again. 

 

jducour is also right, ducks will often stop laying when something changes in their lives or they are stressed. But I honestly think with yours it was just their moult and the natural break they usually take during the colder months after that. Mine do the same thing. Moult in late summer/early fall, then no eggs till spring. 

post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

A haven't lit the coop yet, but I plan to now. I think we're getting about 14 hours of natural light right now, but obviously the sun comes up and down at different times. I read that keeping my timer set for 5am to 930pm all the time and should be good at my latitude. That way, there is no change to their routine. It's been well over 6 weeks since we got an egg. I live in the foothills of Colorado at 9100ft, but no cold weather yet (26* is the lowest this fall). Maybe adding the light will get me some eggs. Tired of getting chicken eggs from my neighbor vs my ducks, but at least I know where they came from!

 

Definitely no fighting. They seem to be friendly to each other all the time now that the WH has been accepted.

post #6 of 7

I provide light from 5 pm- 10 pm, and from 7 am to 9 am.  I live in Utah, so we have a similar weather situation.  I'm only at 5000 ft, but we are supposed to get our first cold snap tonight.  I adopted all of my female ducks as laying adults, and all of them took at least a month off of laying right after getting them.  Two went into a molt during that time, four didn't.  As long as they are getting enough food, and light, they should be fine.  Do you plan on adding heat to their coop?  There is a lot of conflicting advice on this, and at 9100 ft I wonder if you'll have to?

Learning through living with my 8 ducks -  1 Chocolate Runner, 1 Blue Runner, 1 Fawn and White Runner, 1 Khaki Campbell, 2 Welsh Harlequins and 2 Pekins
Reply
Learning through living with my 8 ducks -  1 Chocolate Runner, 1 Blue Runner, 1 Fawn and White Runner, 1 Khaki Campbell, 2 Welsh Harlequins and 2 Pekins
Reply
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

I don't feed or water them at night. I tried, but they are too rambunctious and knock the water over shortly after I close them up at night. They have food and water all day though. I was looking into heating the coop more today, and decided that I won't heat the coop, just insulate a little better. We haven't seen super cold temps since we've lived there (2 years), just about -10F. But we DO have wind. I have another shelter I put out in their yard to give them a haven from it though (plastic 55 gallon barrel cut about 3/4 in half). Daisy will lay on her egg until I let them out, so I don't think they'll freeze without a heated coop

 

I just want my delicious eggs back :old

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