I'm going to try that with a batch of meaties, we will see how it goes. :)
What you will find is that they lay really well their first winter (assuming they weren't hatched so early in the year that they moult their first fall) and winter laying after that is spotty.
- My twelve 2012 girls laid 565 eggs their first winter (Nov through Feb). The first year (since first lay Nov 2012) was 1,970.
- 440 the next winter (half the birds laid no eggs until mid to late February), 1,340 for the year though I lost 2 girls (1 unknown in March, 1 to a fox late April but neither of them laid through the winter)
- 117 the next winter (most of them from 4 girls), 890 for the year (lost another one to a fox last April so only 9 layers half the period).
- This winter? 35 from nine 3.5 Y/O hens.
In contrast the 7 June 2015 girls came into production over time, starting mid Nov and laid 467 eggs through the end of February.
So while you might think you have too many layers their first winter, it gets real thin real fast after they have their first adult moult.
Those that do periodic subtraction cull the older or less productive birds and get new chicks in the spring if they want a fairly consistent amount of eggs through the winter every year.
That is some serious tracking going on there! :) I'll have to see how it goes, this winter they kept me in eggs! Our winters are pretty mild but unfortunately I've never had hens more than one winter as I got wiped out last year by a coyote attack. It will be interesting to see how they do next year. Thanks for the information.