Barred rock only one laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickenmomma123, Aug 20, 2014.

  1. chickenmomma123

    chickenmomma123 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have four barred rocks. One has been laying for about 3 weeks now. The others have not. How long before they should start too?
     
  2. chasiekitten12

    chasiekitten12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 19, 2014
    How old are they
     
  3. chasiekitten12

    chasiekitten12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I must know because some might be younger. How old were they when you got them? When did you get them? Are you sure it is only one chicken laying?
     
  4. chickenmomma123

    chickenmomma123 Out Of The Brooder

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    They are all about the same age. I got them all as chicks. They are now about 23weeks old. I'm almost positive it's the same chicken laying bc it's the only one I ever see up in the coop in the nesting boxes
     
  5. chasiekitten12

    chasiekitten12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you should try to put the chickens in there all of them get them intrested they may not lay for a while they are how they are
     
  6. chasiekitten12

    chasiekitten12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    wait ABOUT that could be it they may be a week younger how long have you had one lay
     
  7. chickenmomma123

    chickenmomma123 Out Of The Brooder

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    The one has been laying for close to a month
     
  8. chasiekitten12

    chasiekitten12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ok put ALL the hens in a nest box they may be intrested some may not some do not lay for a year of age
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    It’s difficult to say when chickens will start laying. Each one is an individual. I’ve had pullets start laying at 16 weeks. I’ve had pullets wait until they were 9 months old to start laying. There are a lot of different things that go into when they will start, heredity being a big one. But the time of year, what they are eating, and how stressed they are all play a part. Putting them in a nest will not start them.

    Pullets tend to start laying early if their parents come from stock that starts to lay early. That is a tendency not an absolute law of nature. Other factors come into play. Whether the days are getting longer or shorter plays a part, as well as how long the days are. Some hens shut down laying when the days get shorter while others will lay all winter, though production may drop. Most tend to lay better in the spring and summer when the days are getting longer. First year pullets usually start laying late summer even with the days getting shorter and normally lay through the winter without going through a molt.

    Before they start to lay, pullets build up extra fat, mostly in the vent area but really some extra fat through their entire body. The purpose if that extra fat is to sustain them if they go broody. They don’t eat much when broody so need that reserve. Even if they don’t go broody nature makes them build up that fat just in case. They have to be eating well enough to build up that fat. If you increase the protein in their diet some you can help them build up that fat pad, but don’t go overboard. Too much of a good thing is not necessarily a good thing. Instead of feeding a 15% or 16% Grower, feed them an 18% to 20% Flock Raiser or something like that. Most Layer feed comes in 16% protein so an alternative is to find a high protein food as a snack to help them get started, especially if you are feeding them a lot of low-protein snacks. The percent protein in part of what they eat is not what is important. It’s how many total grams of protein they eat in an entire day over a period of several days that counts. If all they eat is that 16% Layer they are getting enough protein from that. It’s the additional snacks that can mess that up.

    When chickens get stressed they don’t lay well. Stress could come from them running out of water, too much heat or bitter cold, lights staying on too long, or maybe some disruption to the peace of the flock. Chickens need to feel relatively secure before they are ready to reproduce, which is what is behind egg-laying.

    Breed has something to do with when they start but more important is strain. What I mean by strain is that some traits can be reinforced by selective breeding. If the person selecting which chickens get to breed puts an emphasis on early laying, you tend to get a flock that starts laying early. If they select against early laying or just don’t pay it any mind, the flock tens to start a little later. Hatchery birds are usually fairly early for the breed.

    I assume you got your pullets from a hatchery? Hatchery Barred Rocks tend to start reasonably early, but you need enough pullets for the averages to mean much. Four pullets is not a lot. If I had 10 hatchery Barred Rock pullets, I’d expect the first egg somewhere around 18 to 20 weeks. By 23 to 24 weeks I’d expect about half of them to be laying. By 27 weeks I’d expect practically all of them to be laying, though there is often one holdout. Remember these are averages. The more pullets you have the more they will hold true. With only four pullets just one being off can really mess up the averages.

    One more thing. Pullets that start laying real early are a little more prone to laying problems like prolapse or internal laying. This does not mean that every pullet that starts laying early will have problems, just that there is a small tendency that way. Your best overall production and quality of eggs will probably come from the pullets that start somewhere around 22 to 25 weeks. Don’t panic or go overboard. I think you are in good shape.

    Good luck!
     

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