Originally Posted by Jujubara
1/9 yesterday and 2 for each of the few days before that. I lost my favorite hen sometime Friday night or early Saturday morning. No more dark brown eggs. 😢
What breed was she?
Originally Posted by ToddQ
13/16 still single digits with 20-30 mph winds. Bitter. Girls are doing good despite the cold. They are impressing me.
First winter for them?
I've tracked daily production of 6 flocks. 2 have added light, the others don't. On the same spreadsheet I record daily high and low temperatures. For my part, I know it is anecdotal but there has never been a correlation between production and cold. It has gotten down to -19F in the past.
Ovulation is primarily a function of increasing vs. decreasing daylength and detection by the hens' pineal gland.
Originally Posted by matven123
Yes it is
You're doing a good job with them.
But a word of caution. Don't get discouraged, future winters won't be the same. Most breeds lay well through their first winter.
Second autumn and each thereafter they will molt. Then they won't lay eggs while they grow a new winter coat and their reproductive tract gets a much needed rest. Some will start up after molt but most will wait till after the winter solstice when days get longer.
I have a 7 year old hen that quits in September and starts back up in January. She's already kicked out 10 eggs this month. Last year she laid an average 5.5 eggs a week from January to August. Due to her age and 4 months with no eggs, I know a lot of people would have given up on her.
Originally Posted by ariesgirl
Help!!! I'm not sure what's wrong with her.......she was egg bound in the fall and she hasn't been right since. This is how I found her tonight and I don't remember he looking like this yesterday. [IMG]
You need to post this information on the following forum.
Originally Posted by birds4kids
5/5 They are really doing better than I could have hoped. May hatch and no steady eggs till Jan.1 but it ramped up quick probably averaging 3.5-4 eggs a day for the last week. 13 hours of light, layer pellets with some flock raiser pellets mixed in and for scratch I mix traditional scratch with some dry mealworms grit and oyster shell. They get reasonable amounts of kitchen leftovers too.
Sounds good. I just caution not to mix oyster shell or any calcium source with any feed. They need to choose whether they need it or not.
Originally Posted by austrolover1
2/20! Help here!!! Why are they not a laying steadily? What do you all feed yours? High was 41F low was 20F.
Any complete chicken feed will be fine. Layer only if they're all laying. Any other type of feed if some aren't or you have a mixed flock of roosters, young birds while providing oyster shell on the side for those building egg shells.
All feeds have virtually the same ratios of energy, fat, vitamins, minerals, etc., that chickens are known to need.
The primary differences are calcium and protein percentages.
Adding other things to the diet over a complete feed has the potential to alter that necessary nutrition. Kitchen scraps are a good use of that excess food but don't overdo it.
I have enough birds that I can use all the kitchen scraps and each one is lucky to get a bite.
As I said, it is day length, not cold. It works for all animals. Increasing day length is a signal to reproduce. On the other hand, declining and short days = don't reproduce.
I posted the following in another thread to explain a bit of the science.
The retina transmits information about light/dark periods to the pineal gland.
Light exposure to the retina is first relayed to the nucleus of the hypothalamus, an area of the brain that coordinates biological clock signals. Fibers from there descend to the spinal cord and ultimately project to the superior cervical ganglia, from which neurons ascend back to the pineal gland. The pineal gland transduces signals from the nervous system into a hormonal signal.
The gland produces serotonin and subsequently melatonin, a hormone that affects the gonads for sperm production in males and ovulation in females. An increase in melatonin causes the gonads to become inactive. As photoperiod in relation to day vs. night is the most important clue for animals to determine season. As it lengthens, the gonads are rejuvenated. The duration of melatonin secretion each day is directly proportional to the length of the night because of the pineal gland's ability to measure daylength. Besides reproduction, it also affects sleep timing and blood pressure regulation.
Originally Posted by karenerwin
Only 3 eggs today
Hi Karen. How many laying age birds do you have?
Originally Posted by junebuggena
4/11 today. Things are definitely improving with each bit of daylight gained.
Things usually start to pick up by mid/late January.
Originally Posted by Tinwife
... One day we got all 7.
That's always a great feeling.