I am going to run down my scenario and I would like you tell me if I am being impatient or if I need to make changes:
I have 4 hatchery pullets, RIR (23 weeks), Light Brahma (23 weeks), Dark Brahma (22 weeks) and a Salmon Faverolles (22 weeks). My RIR and the light brahma have had big red combs and wattles for nearly a month and still I have got no eggs. They are big, healthy birds, regularly checked for lice and mites. They live in a 3x4 ft (available floor space, nest boxes are external) hen house, a 4x10 ft enclosed run and they have access to a 8 x 24 ft fenced off area for about 3-4 hours a day. They have 24 hour access to water via nipple waterers, and access to Organic NatureSmart starter/grower all day (in the run, no food in the coop). We let them into their run at about 8 am and lock them up at about 9 pm. They get strawberries, whole broccoli plants, grass, wild bird seed, and other miscellaneous greens and treats about once a day or every other day - I would guess that those things comprise maybe 5-10% of their diet, plus whatever bugs they scratch up in their enclosed run and in the mini-chicken yard. On suspicion of the RIR and Light Brahma laying soon I have offered about a 1/4 cup of oyster shell which they ate up in a couple days. I am holding off on offering more until I get an egg on concern of the non-layers getting too much calcium.
I put colored plastic easter eggs in each next box (there are two) and in the past week at least one of them has been going in and nesting - there is a large nest shape indentation in the shavings in each nest box and the plastic eggs are right in the middle of it.
I am just wondering if there is anything I may be missing that could be holding them back - I really am only concerned with the RIR not laying yet at 23 weeks. I know Brahma's are late to mature and the Salmon Faverolles is stunted from health issues when she was a chick, so I'm not holding my breath for her to lay. But I would have thought the RIR would be on for a month by now.
Do I just need more patience? Because we leave for vacation in a week and I want an egg before we go! :)