at what age do hens stop laying eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by herkharris, Dec 23, 2014.

  1. herkharris

    herkharris New Egg

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    i am new to being a chicken owner. was given 18 hens and one rooster (ameracuana all). have 11 hens left after racoons killed the others. had to get rid of 14 racoons, before the killing stopped.
    The laying has been hit and miss since then. They have completely stopped laying for the past 2 months. any suggestions? They are about 4 years old
     
  2. Mountain Peeps

    Mountain Peeps Change is inevitable, like the seasons Premium Member

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    Sorry for your losses![​IMG]

    Four years is when hens start declining anyway. When there is stress and trauma in their lives they will defiantly decline. Make sure they have a safe, comfy living space, food, water and calcium and light.
     
  3. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would put the emphasis on safe.

    More raccoons will take the place of the ones now gone.
     
  4. mymilliefleur

    mymilliefleur Keeper of the Flock

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    x2. Most people cull their birds at two years, but most of my birds are still going strong at that age, in fact I have a productoin red, laying very well at 6+ years old, and I had a hen lay untill over 11 years, while on the other hand I have had hens that slack off after only the first season, so it depends on the bird, breed, etc. I agree with mountain peeps, the truama of loseing your other birds, and especialy this time of year, probably has somthing to do with it.
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I've had hatchery birds laying at 7 years. they always take the winter off, to molt and take a break, then start back up in the spring.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Short days/long nights and/or molting are most likely responsible for the cessation of lay you are now experiencing.
    They should start back up once the days start to significantly lengthen, but all chickens are different.
    For some, the older they get the less often they'll lay...only time will tell what your particular birds will do.

    Some folks do cull their hens after 2 years, especially hybrid production type birds.
    Other folks wait longer or let them live out their lives whether they lay or not.
     
  7. RonP

    RonP Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a few around 6 years old.

    They will rarely lay, but are still good looking, healthy birds.

    They will live their years out as pets.

    I'll only put them down it I see them suffering, same as my dog.
     

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