12-month-old Hens Not Laying--Stress?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by goatmama, Apr 22, 2009.

  1. goatmama

    goatmama New Egg

    Apr 22, 2009

    I'm so glad to have found this forum. I bought six 12-month-old hens last week, 3 barred rocks and 3 Aracaunas, from a local farmer who was down-sizing her flock (she had about 15 hens total). We also took a (thus far very sweet) rooster home to keep the hens safe since they are free-ranging much of the day.

    We have had the hens for 6 days now, and none of them has laid a single egg. I've read that stress/disruption/moving can cause chickens to stop laying, and I'm guessing that that's what's going on since they are too young to moult, right?

    I am feeding them layer pellets along with table scraps and whatever they scrounge up in the yard. There is plenty of fresh water available.

    How long should I expect this egg strike to last? Anything else I can do to encourage some laying action?

    I have put wooden eggs in the nest boxes in the hopes that the hens will know what's expected of them.

    Thanks for any insight!
  2. bigcats

    bigcats Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 22, 2009
    Hope you get an answer to this, because I'm in the same boat - got them 6 days ago and no eggs yet, although mine are only 6 months old so may also just be a bit young.

    I didn't have a wooden egg so I used a tennis ball.
  3. Driftwood Coop

    Driftwood Coop Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 15, 2008
    Amesbury, Mass
    Stress can be a very major factor in egglaying. They can stop laying for weeks. Also, given the age, is it possible that they have molted or are about to molt? That would affect their egglaying.
    I'd switch that tennis ball with a golf ball. The tennis ball might really confuse them!
  4. bigcats

    bigcats Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 22, 2009
    What, furry eggs aren't appealing? [​IMG]

    Darn it, I don't have a golfball either. Maybe I'll snatch a plastic easter egg from work.
  5. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    [​IMG] You are doing everything right. It could be a few days to a few weeks before they start laying again.
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2009
  6. kbadkins

    kbadkins Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 18, 2009
    Yorba Linda, Ca
    I am in the same boat.. I have 3 hens not even a year old yet and we recently rebuilt their coop and they have not laid in two days. I normally would get 3-6 eggs per day total from all three... I am hoping they are not laying because of the change in the coop.. ?? I did have a broody and she quit laying about a week ago but I think I broke her and she is no longer sitting.. thank god.. I am not in the chicken hatchin biz and just have these biddy's as pets.

    if anyone can offer anything else that it might be that would be great.. I don't think its molting because I thought that does not happen until 18 months of age particularly.


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