ALL my chickens stopped laying!!! WHY

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by aussieheelr, Jan 20, 2010.

  1. aussieheelr

    aussieheelr Songster

    I had 9 hens going strong for the past month. Then this last Saturday my Banty Cochin decided she wanted to be a mama... so obviously she's not laying. BUT the rest seem to have joined in on the behaivior, I've only goten 1 egg since Saturday and it's from my black leghorn. What went wrong? I don't see alot of feathers in the coop... not molting, haven't changed their food, they have all the oyster shell they could need and more avail at free choice. All look very healthy, perky fiending for their raisins like always, no puss, buggers, respitory problems, just my regular happy chicken family... minus the EGGS.

    The weather DID get a bit nicer as in this week we have had lows in the mid to high 20s instead of the single digits... with highs in the mid to high 40s instead of the low 30s. And then there's the "Murphys law" I guess you could take into concideration, someone just asked if I could sell them 2 18 packs of eggs everyweek... go figure [​IMG]

    So chicken friends... any ideas why my girls have all at the same time have taken a vacation and decided not to "pay their rent?"
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2010
  2. 1acrefarm

    1acrefarm Songster

    Nov 3, 2007
    Not enough hours of daylight. Give them some artificial light to give them a total 14 hours between natural and artificial light.
  3. zoomia

    zoomia Songster

    Apr 6, 2009
    Actually ... I had about 5 hens producing eggs (out of 13). One went broody and the rest went on strike. Two and a half weeks later, 2 haven't resumed laying and 2 have. So I think it's messed up their cycle or something ... you know, those broody mama pheromones circulating around the coop.
  4. farmin'chick

    farmin'chick Songster

    Apr 13, 2009
    Rocky Mount VA
    Also check your coop security for an egg eating predator. It's part of my procedure when they all change a behavior at once to check for predators -- rats, snakes, small possums or skunks, etc. And if they free range at all, watch/listen to them to hear if they are laying outside the pen.

    I just found my hen duck's nest -- we've been looking for 10 days.
  5. aussieheelr

    aussieheelr Songster

    Well ok, I'll add a light bulb. I hadn't used one all winter and they were doing ok and since we're past the winter solstice I thought we'd be fine... but I can certinaly add that.

    no free ranging, they're grounded unless I have the time to watch them. I lost 5 girls to preditors this last fall while they were ranging. No sign of what happened to them, just *poof* And alot of my neighbors have chickens (3 out of 5) and they alway refur to our coop and the Fort Knox of coops (DH is quite proud of it and the other wives have been asking their hubbys to make one for them just like it.. he's so proud). So their chickies are much easier targets... I digress.
    But I'll double check...
    I do check for eggs about 3 times a day... use to see them on nests all the time, not at all anymore (other than broody of corse)

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by