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How long does a hen lay? How long does a hen live?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

My girls are all just over a year old. I am wondering how long I can expect them to lay. How old is a hen when it stops laying? How old does a hen live to be?

A crazy chicken girl for sure!1 silver wyndotte, 1 easter egger , and 2 black austrolorps- All dearly loved and cared for.
Anything is possible, its just the probability thats the question.
R.I.P. Ralpie and Doofy, I'll always love you
WANTED: day old orpington and ameraucana chicks-pm me
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A crazy chicken girl for sure!1 silver wyndotte, 1 easter egger , and 2 black austrolorps- All dearly loved and cared for.
Anything is possible, its just the probability thats the question.
R.I.P. Ralpie and Doofy, I'll always love you
WANTED: day old orpington and ameraucana chicks-pm me
Reply
post #2 of 4

Chickens will live 10 years and beyond if well cared for & not taken by a preditor. They will lay eggs that entire time. However - a hen will only reliably produce eggs for the first 2 years. After that the egg laying begins to slow down & may stop all together for months at a time. This is why most production houses replace the birds so often - as long as they produce lots of eggs they make money - when they become unreliable it costs too much to feed & house them.

"I can eat 50 eggs"

Inspired by the movie Cool Hand Luke
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"I can eat 50 eggs"

Inspired by the movie Cool Hand Luke
Reply
post #3 of 4

The maximum life span varies with the breed.

True breeds live longer than 'production hybrids' usually (like ISA brown), but it seems that most hens die due to disease and predation when kept by individuals and are culled as soon as they start to lay less 18month to 2.5 years in the poultry industry.

Sandie

post #4 of 4

If you google 'worlds oldest chicken' you'll find a Guiness Book entry on a hen who lived to be 16yrs old.  My experience is 8-10 years with good care however predation and disease normally gets them before that.  Enjoy your hens.  Regardless of their life span, they bring joy to our lives.

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