Originally Posted by bobindy1
2 weeks now our hens have gone been laying approximately 15 eggs per day. This is an approximately 50 bird flock from which we normally get 40 eggs on a high day and 30 on a low day. They are getting LOTS more food variety now that the pasture is opened up to them and they aren't stuck in their winter digs. We aren't running the lights or heat lamps any more because the weather and daytime hours don't require it... but the sudden drop occurred a couple of weeks AFTER that change.. Can anyone offer up any suggestions as to what we can look at in terms of reasons this might be happening?
How long per day were your lights on prior to shutting them off?
Any drastic change in lighting can change egg production.
Any chance they are laying out in the range area?
Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for 3-4 days can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. They can be confined to coop 24/7 for a few days to a week, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it. ..at least for a good while, then repeat as necessary.