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post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Hi, we have had our 3 girls for about 3 weeks now and they seem to be settling in well. We started out only letting them out of their run into the garden when we were in the garden as we back onto a railway line and were worried about foxes but have gradually become much braver and an now let them put themselves to bed in the evening. They are laying 2 eggs a day mostly, they are are Warrens, really docile and friendly. They were about 19 weeks when they came so are now 22 weeks old. Do people think this is about right for young chickens? I thought we would be getting 3 a day most days by now. As far as I can tell they are healthy and certainly seem happy enough. The other thing I'm worried about is that one of them is roosting in the nesting area every night, this means that she is pooing on the straw, then first thing, one of the girls is laying her egg there! I did read that you could put a plant pot on the nesting area at night to stop them sleeping there but if I did that, I assume I'd have to get up with the lark to remove the pot before the first hen wants to lay her egg and I don't do early mornings!  The other thing I was wondering was if I need to give the girls extra oyster shell? They have layers pellets and all but 2 of the eggs since they have arrived have been fine, 2 had soft shells but that is all. Interestingly the girls seem to know if the egg is wrong as they lay the egg on the roosting bars, not the nesting area!

We started out letting them wander all over the garden but first stopped them coming on the patio as all the poo was attracting flies which were then pouring into the lounge and then I also stopped them going on the main lawn as I could cope with poo under my washing line! Love to hear how others have faired! Jane.

post #2 of 8

Hello, Jane, welcome to BYC.  You might want to provide oyster shell, but the layer feed generally contains enough calcium.  Soft shelled and 'dropped' eggs are fairly common when birds first start laying.  The bird that is not laying is probably just slower maturing.

Friends are the family you make for yourself.
There are no coincidences- only providences.
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Friends are the family you make for yourself.
There are no coincidences- only providences.
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post #3 of 8
Hi welcome-byc.gif Jane from Yorkshire!

Glad you could join us here! It all sounds pretty normal what you are experiencing right now with your new warrens. As sourland said your third hen may just be a little behind. She should start up soon with the laying. I'm afraid each bird is individual and will only start when they are ready.

The one who is roosting nest box ~ can you pop out when they have gone to bed and move her onto a roost bar? I've found this works with young birds. It can take some time and you may to keep repeating this for a while untill she gets the hang of it.

Please be fox aware if you are near a railway, foxes use these as a main road. Do you lock your birds up in the coop on a night? Do they have a secure run?

Please do pop by the UK thread if you get chance ~ http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/655508/uk-member-please-say-hi/0_30

Good luck and enjoy BYC frow.gif
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi, we have an eglu coop and run which most people say is fox proof, I agree about the railway line and yes we do lock them up at night. Great idea to move the cheeky one each night, I'll try that tomorrow. I go out each night slug hunting anyway! Reassuring that one is slower to start, we did have at least one day of 3 eggs and I got all excited! We are keeping a chart. I love the eglu coop as I can remove the tray under the roosting bars each morning and brush away the poo!
post #5 of 8

Hi Jane, welcome to byc. :frow

 

I like to provide oyster shell on the side.

 

Free ranging is nice, as well as them putting themselves up at night. I do hope you are checking to make sure there aren't already predators in there and locking them up to. It's well worth the effort.

post #6 of 8
Nice to meet you Jane, glad you joined the BYC flock.

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post #7 of 8

Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)

I set fire to the rain! Watch it pour as I, touched your face. Well it burn while I cried, because I heard it screaming out your name. And I threw us into flames. I knew that was the last time, the last time...I set fire to the rain! -Adele

 

Look at my flock page! http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bantamfan4lifes-flock

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I set fire to the rain! Watch it pour as I, touched your face. Well it burn while I cried, because I heard it screaming out your name. And I threw us into flames. I knew that was the last time, the last time...I set fire to the rain! -Adele

 

Look at my flock page! http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bantamfan4lifes-flock

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post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Good point eggsighted4life, I didn't think about that! I'm thinking I may go back to putting them to bed myself a little early as otherwise I'm rarely handling them, no problem this week as it's half term but back to school next week! I should add, not as a pupil!!
New question, should I be worried if one of them seems to have a bit of a runny tummy?
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