Last year, my hens did not start to lay until June. I had them penned up with a small outdoor run through Spring hunting season. That may have had something to do with the late clutches, but I want to make sure they start laying in March or April this year. I'm not going to pen them up this hunting season, since they're pretty good at staying in the yard and there were no hunters around the property last year. I'm going to add light to their coop. Right now (late February) in Wisconsin, sunrise is just before 7 am and sunset is between 5:30 and 6 pm. Should I ease them into more light, or is it ok to turn on the lights at 4am to get them 14 hours of light right away? Do toms need anything special to get them to breed with the hens? My primary tom roosts outside, unless it is -20 out at night (which I hope is done for the year.) They're all heritage mutts, most likely a mix of standard bronze and slate. Would an unbred hen start laying before being with a tom?