28 weeks and fed wrong feed - no eggs yet!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Lavisy, May 5, 2011.

  1. Lavisy

    Lavisy Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 7, 2010
    Perth, WA
    I have 4 hens who are between 25-28 weeks old but haven't started laying. This is my fault however as I have been mistakenly not feeding them layers pellets!

    Once I realized this mistake I quickly put them on layers and some crushed oyster shell. They are all happy and healthy but I'm wondering how long it will take for them to start laying now? I changed the feed 2 days ago.

    Thanks so much!
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2011
  2. bakerjw

    bakerjw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Don't worry about the feed too much. I had a free range flock that ate whatever they could scratch up and scratch grains that I'd give them. They all but ignored any layer pellets or crumbles. They laid good eggs all the time.

    You should be getting eggs pretty soon. I have some 7 month old White Rocks that are starting to lay regularly now.
     
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I doubt there was any harm done, regarding the feed. Most here don't bother with layer pellets until the first egg appears anyhow. No harm, no fowl. (pun intended)
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Did I miss you telling us the breed? My experience with Leghorns and assorted Red hens is 16-18 weeks, Rock derivatives 20-22 weeks. Speckled Sussex 23-24 weeks. Don't have much experience with breeds beyond those mentioned.
     
  5. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Layer pellets don't make them lay. They are just the proper feed for hens who are laying due to the calcium content. [​IMG] Some take ages to lay the first egg, so don't worry. You didn't cause it.
     
  6. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

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    Also, since you're in Perth, the hours of daylight and the fact that they matured during the fall can delay the laying. I'd expect them to lay within a month of developing a VERY red face and comb. Keep an eye out for squatting behavior, too.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  7. Lavisy

    Lavisy Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 7, 2010
    Perth, WA
    Cool thanks guys! I didnt think about the season they were born, it's only just started to cool off from a very hot and long summer here in Perth. I have a pure silkie, 2 silkie x Cochin and a modern game x australorp.

    Will they not lay if they don't like the egg laying locations given? They have 2 nest boxes on their store bought coop.
    Thanks again!
     
  8. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

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    Quote:Hmmm. Silkies can take forever to lay, but I would expect the Australorp mix to lay soon. How is their face coloring? They will almost certainly lay in the boxes you've given them.
     
  9. BANTAMWYANDOTTE

    BANTAMWYANDOTTE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Lavisy, with the assortment of hens you have I would expect eggs from the Austrlorp Game cross soon and then a few weeks later the silkies should start as well. I have Golden Comets and they all started laying between 20 and 23 weeks old without layers pellets. However, they were bred for that, they only egging breed you have is Austrlorp. They are excellent layers and I would expect eggs from that hen first. Do you free-range them? If not try to provide them with some green leavy vegatation (weeds, grass, lettuce) The reason I was told to do this is because chickens that are confined are less likley to reach they're full egg-laying potential due to the missing nutrients they get from green-vegatation. So I tired it and my egg production improved a bit. With your hens being on their first egging year this may help encourage their bodies to pick up the pace so to say.....A hen that lays an egg is a happy hen....Remember that if they ever stop completely they are trying to tell you that something is wrong. An unhappy hen will not produce eggs. This is not very likley with your hens but is common among hens two years and up. This is just a word of precaution, food and water daily, Dry nesting area, Roost that is at least eight inches above the nests and plenty of treats (worms, greenery, table scraps) and you should do just fine!


    Some Friendly Advice from Kentucky

    Timothy
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  10. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Quote:Fully agree. You did not prevent them from laying by not feeding them layer and you did not do any damage to their system. Once they are grown, their systems can handle the extra calcium if they are not laying, but they don't need that extra calcium until they actually start to lay.

    When they are ready to lay, they will lay, whether there are nest boxes available or not. Just put a fake egg in the nest box and get ready. This brings up a question. Are they possibly hiding a nest on you? They do that sometimes.

    There is no set time that an individual hen will start to lay. You realy don't have enough hens for the averages to mean much, the chickens are such individuals. Then with it being fall for you, who knows what effect that will have. My pullets normally do not molt their first fall and lay through the winter, but some do. Have yours gone through a molt? That may help explain it, but again, some hens may start very young and some take a long time to get started, even if it is not fall.
     

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