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Question about molting

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I have 12 hens that are just over a year old and going through their first molt. I also have 13 pullets in with them who are 8 months old. Since the older ones began molting egg production has decreased drastically to only 3 or 4 eggs a day. I was getting 15-18 eggs a day before. I know when they molt egg production decreases but why have my younger chickens stopped laying also? The younger ones lay blue and olive eggs so I can tell they aren't laying. Is it just because of the shorter days? I swear one of the younger chickens has patchy spots that looks like she's going through a soft molt but aren't they too young to molt?
post #2 of 7
Some pullets will skip the molt their first fall/winter and continue laying all winter. Some don’t skip the molt. Heredity has a fair amount do with that, pure luck part of it. The earlier they start to lay in the summer the more likely they are to molt.

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

 

"If you make every game a life-and-death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot." — former North Carolina coach Dean Smith

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

Reply

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

 

"If you make every game a life-and-death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot." — former North Carolina coach Dean Smith

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

Reply
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Oh okay thanks! Hopefully it's a quick molt lol
post #4 of 7

Some first year birds will lay all winter, some will slow down or stop altogether....molt or not.

Do you free range?

 

I use supplemental lighting to keep them all laying...... unless they're molting.

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
I let them free range when I'm home, usually on weekends. By the time I get home from work during the week now they're already roosted up for the night. I've been contemplating getting a timer for the light I have in the coop but I'm not sure if it would be a good thing to do
post #6 of 7

A little late for supplemental lighting, IMO, best to start ramping it up in late Aug/early Sept.

But read up on it for next year.

Here's a pretty good article on supplemental lighting. 

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks aart!
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