10 month old Speckled Sussex not laying, defective claws.....

towniefarm

In the Brooder
9 Years
Mar 1, 2010
10
0
22
I could use some advice on a Speckled Sussex hen that I have raised since a chick. I have a flock of five, with the ss being one of two added last spring. They are housed in a toy coop, but free range a very large back yard. She is the lowest on the totem pole, but is not harassed. She is fat and glossy, but has a claw defect. The outer claws on both feet point outwards at a grotesque angle. However, it does not affect her gait. She is easily handled and in no pain that I can tell. Perfectly normal, but no inclination to lay. I feed layena, lots of garden and table scraps, boss on occassion with scratch grains. I choose not to run a light out there. They are pets and she will not be going to freezer camp, but the deformed claws have got me wondering. Perhaps Speckled Sussex hens are late layers? Most folks I know who keep chickens stick to the RIR, BR, and sex link varieties. I have been told that the more exotic breeds are prone to more problems. Just curious and would appreciate any advice and opinions.
 

StarLover21

Songster
8 Years
Oct 11, 2011
2,199
92
173
Sorry, but I don't think she'll lay if she's 10 months. She probably had some sort of spraddle leg, or got curled toes when she hatched. Do you know if she hatched like this? SS aren't that uncommon- I haven't heard of more exotic breeds being prone to deformities, although maybe in some cases that is the truth. I'm not a big SS expert. Maybe she's just a really late layer and will start in the spring. Does she have a red comb? Do you think you could post a picture of her comb adn toes?

Thanks!
 

towniefarm

In the Brooder
9 Years
Mar 1, 2010
10
0
22
Quote:Thanks for the info about spraddle leg, something I've never heard of. I'm embarassed to say that I noticed the deformed claws as soon as she was put in the birdie box at the feed store. I was too timid to say something to the very rushed, rude kid that was on chick detail. That won't happen again. My two friends with chickens are old timers with at least 50 birds each and have no tolerance for silly pet chicken sentiments. Their advice is to cull if no eggs by 9 months. Her comb is bright red, her vent area is golden yellow, not bleached out. I will try to get a photo up, not adept at pc stuff, but daughter is home from college, so good time to learn. I will read up on spraddle leg as well.
 

Ariel301

Songster
10 Years
Nov 14, 2009
1,355
17
151
Kingman Arizona
She could still lay. The last bunch I raised took a year before they started laying, for some reason in 2010 everyone in my area had problems with chickens--they either didn't start on time or already laying birds quit laying for months at a time even when they had a history of laying very well all winter. Mine finally started in late winter, around February.
 

1muttsfan

Free Ranging
9 Years
Mar 26, 2011
21,033
6,891
657
Upper Peninsula Michigan
Don't be discouraged yet, my speckled sussex are always among the last of my young birds to lay, and shortening daylight hours in fall and the beginning of winter do not help. It would be worth it to wait until the days get longer, as you have spent so much time and resources getting her this far. It will not take much feed to keep her around a little while longer.

My sussex hen is among my favorite birds, very friendly and personable. Even though my sussex have never been my best layers they have always been among the favorites due to their big personalities.
 

towniefarm

In the Brooder
9 Years
Mar 1, 2010
10
0
22
Quote:Yes, That's what I was hoping to hear about about the Speckled Sussex breed, perhaps they have a habit of being a bit on the late side. My RIR, and BSL from the previous year began laying in the early summer months, but the Silver Wyndotte did not start in until October.
 

towniefarm

In the Brooder
9 Years
Mar 1, 2010
10
0
22
Quote:Great advice, spoken like a true chicken fan, hope springs eternal! I started my backyard chicken adventure nearly two years ago and still get excited every time I check the nest boxes. Not so much when I have to crawl under the deck to collect an egg, but that's another story....
 

debid

Crowing
9 Years
Jan 20, 2011
7,543
6,824
496
middle TN
You seem so sure she isn't laying but if they're ranging, how sure are you? I'd go on an egg hunt.
 
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