Araucana hasn't laid in 5 months...what's up??


In the Brooder
9 Years
Mar 22, 2010
I have a free-range Araucana who hasn't laid an egg since mid-December. I expected her production to go down in the winter but she hasn't started up yet and I don't know why. All my hens get organic feed, fresh water and access to the yard (including barn/manure piles/pastures) every day. I have scoured the yard and am pretty positive she's not laying anywhere outside. She seems to have stopped production shortly after we had stray dogs come on our property and kill 2 other hens...could it be that the shock of this incident made her stop laying. Any thoughts as to if she might start again. She's kind of a "free loader" right now but I'm not ready yet to cull her. Thanks!
my SCM did the same thing! she took a 4 month break from Oct - Feb. i was confused and thought she was eggbound or something! well, after some help on was because she was moulting. but i didn't KNOW she was moulting cuz she really didn't lose hardly any feathers. i DID see some feathers of hers laying around, but i thought when hens moulted, they lost a lot of feathers and looked pretty sparse, but not necessarily. they can have a "slow" moult and just lose a few feathers. my other girls moulted and lost a bit more feathers, but they only took 4-6 weeks off of laying. anyway, she's laying now, and pretty much only takes one day off a week. she's also my favorite hen and i would keep her even if she didn't lay at all.
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It could have started off as a shock from that and then lead into a molt. I would keep her for awhile longer since she is only one her she isn't eating crazy amounts of food. What kinda food are you giving too? Hens will stop laying for a few reasons, low nutrition, molting, broodie (which you would know), Shock - If they dont feel safe in there coop they wont lay there. Try looking her up for a few days and see what happens then.
If she acts healthy otherwise, I'd say it's either what jferlisi suggested, shock possibly leading to a slow molt, or that she's laying elsewhere. If you have a run, I'd keep her in it for a few days. Or I'd spend your next day off doing a lot of outdoor chores, watching her every move. She could have quite a collection of eggs stored somewhere. I know you say you've looked, but chickens can hide in some pretty obscure places...
If you have a dog crate, put her in that. If she isn't feeling safe, it will give her a cozy place to start laying again and will let you keep an eye on her up close, and see if she is losing any feathers due to molting. Is her face a nice bright pink. If her face is pale, it is an indication of something else going on.

Maybe the weather is cold or chickens and other poultry only lay spring and summer.Maybe in Fall but rarely in the winter.

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