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Are my ladies done forever?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by TinaTot, Dec 16, 2016.

  1. TinaTot

    TinaTot Just Hatched

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    Dec 16, 2016
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    Hi all, newbie here :)

    I have two auracanas who were given to me by a friend when I first started raising chickens early in 2016. She also had been given them from a friend before me, so basically we have a swap going on. Needless to say, Both of the ladies have an unknown age.

    In summertime they both were laying beautiful blue eggs daily, and then once July-august hit, one stopped laying completely and the other was phasing out-- even found an egg or two in the yard and in the tree line. Once august ended, neither chicken has laid an egg since.

    They both went through a time where they loooked like they were partially molting, but never lost too many feathers. Their butts look good, fluffy and clean, and they still roam and eat with the other chickens.

    Since it's gotten cold this past month, both spend a good bit of time together in the coop on the roost, not really going outside a ton.

    Needless to say, it has been about 4 months since the eggs have stopped-- I'm kind of thinking that they are done.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    They will very likely begin laying once the day length starts to increase. Such birds were selected for egg color rather than quantity of production. They never lay as frequently as production breeds but generally continue to lay over a greater number of years.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    What do you feed? I mean daily.......Treats/ snacks.......


    Cheers!
     
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Overrun With Chickens

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    Easter Eggers or true Ameraucana? Makes a big difference in production rate. However, as long as a hen is healthy, she is capable of laying well into old age. There have been documented incidents of hens over 10 years old, still laying a egg or two a week.
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

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    [​IMG]

    Mature ladies need a nice, long break to rest and recharge [​IMG]

    I've had hatchery birds up to 7-8 years of age and never had them just plain quit laying. I'd still get maybe 3 eggs a week from them.

    I have breeder quality Marans that haven't given me eggs for months. These ladies will be 5 years old in 2017. Yesterday, I got a beautiful chocolate egg.

    I agree they'll start laying again in the spring. Don't ever make decisions about a hen's laying ability in the winter. If she's not laying in December, that's okay. If she's not laying in June, that's another story.......
     
    2 people like this.
  6. TinaTot

    TinaTot Just Hatched

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    Dec 16, 2016
    Pennsylvania

    They have a varied diet. I keep them stocked with layer pellet feed, give scratch w/grains, oyster shell.

    We also give goodies- lettuce, broccoli, squash, watermelon rind, steel oats... and they are completely free range on 4 acres with lots of plants.
     
  7. TinaTot

    TinaTot Just Hatched

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    Dec 16, 2016
    Pennsylvania

    I misspelled, Araucanas* they are grey, tailless.
    I just didn't know if it was customary for certain chicken breeds to stop for a few months at a time.

    I have a light that will be put on a timer (soon), to at least gauge them for more hours of "day". Not sure if heat plays a factor in their laying cycle, too.
     
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Overrun With Chickens

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    Long Beach, WA
    Most adult hens stop laying during the winter months. Layer feed should not be fed to birds that aren't actively laying, and scratch is an extra and should be limited.
     

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