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8 Month old hens not laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Animal Sandman, Dec 14, 2015.

  1. Animal Sandman

    Animal Sandman In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2014
    Blacksburg, Virgina
    A friend and I split a group of female EE chicks back in April, making them about 8 months old now. My friend's group of hens are laying well and they are getting about a dozen eggs a day from 15 hens for about a month or more now. Where as I am only getting 1 or 2 every few days. What do think is going on with my hens? We both let ours free range, but every now and then I coop mine up for couple days to make sure they are laying somewhere else and still no difference. They have good quality feed and of course access to water. My mind is just blown that my friend's group is laying so well and mine is barely producing. Any input is greatly appreciated.

  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Free Ranging

    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
    A few questions..
    How many birds do you have ? and are they all hens for sure. ???
    Do they get enough light ? same as your friends flock ?
    Is your friend feeding same feed as you are ??
    At 8 months, it is a time when many pullets start to lay or are laying already. Many start at 6 months or even less. I don't have a CRYSTAL BALL , but maybe some factors are such that yours are late starters. .. Another factor to consider is the time of year. Often chickens will go into a mini molt at this time. I know that normally young chickens usually should not, but it does occur. So, it may be a coincidence of the start of laying and weather and seasonal changes bringing about this mini molt. My chickens went thru a similar mini molt and I had no eggs for 2 months. They just are starting to lay again now, but not all at once.
  3. Animal Sandman

    Animal Sandman In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2014
    Blacksburg, Virgina
    Thanks for the response Caveman. I have 15 hens total and so does my friend. I have some older hens in with my flock that are still laying (The ones that aren't molting, that is) and a few younger black copper marass that should be laying about now too. I believe the marans should be about 7ish months old. I have 7 easter eggers from the group that we split and know that they are hens. I had a rooster from that group and got rid of him and I no longer have any roosters in my flock at this time.

    As far as light, neither my friend or I have supplemental lighting in our coops and we both let our hens free range. Like I said, the only time I've been cooping mine up in the run during the day is when i want to see if they are actually laying. The feed I'm feeding is a layer crumble from a local feed mill that I've been using for years and I believe my friend is using some type of Purina layer.

    I'm just so confused and frustrated that my friend's hens have been laying great for a while now and mine from the exact same hatch aren't doing squat. I feel like we are basically raising them the same way, but obviously i'm missing something. I'm not new to raising chickens so I know that the production will drop off at this time of year, but I guess I would just expect mine to be the same as the rest from the group.
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    My thoughts would be your friend was or is feeding a better quality ration or one with more protein than yours. I wouldn't put them on a layer ration until everyone is laying and done growing.

    I will often add scratch into my feeding to cut the protein to slow down the onset of lay in my young hens to give them time to finishing growing before laying. So my thought are yours aren't getting enough protein to start laying.

    I would put yours back on a non medicated grower to give them a boost, offering oyster shells on the side. And than I would compare my friends feeding regimen to mine to see how they differ.
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Ditto Dat^^^
    Closely compare the feed nutrition levels, all feed has labels that show these... and any other foods provided.

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