Billy the Free Loader!--Update Billy is a Free Loader No More!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Cel45, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. Cel45

    Cel45 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I went to collect Tilly's egg today and I found three eggs in the nest. Tilly's egg, the fake white egg I leave in there, and another lighter brown egg. When I picked up the lighter egg it was very chalky. I thought my three year old had put one of the fake brown eggs in the nest. But when I went into the garage, the two fake brown eggs were there. This egg looks like the fake ones. Two pics below. The first is Billy's and the second is Tilly's and Billy's (Billy's egg is on the right).

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    Hello All,

    I am just looking for some words of wisdom. I am enclosing some pics of Billy one of my Production Reds. Billy is 32 weeks old. Billy has not laid and egg, and does not squat. Her sister, Tilly (I will enclose a pic for comparison) has been laying since since December 3rd and has taken two days off in that time span. What do you make of Billy? Could it be that she just will not lay or not very well? She sure is not living up to her Production Red background. Here is a little information to help.

    Feed:Started them on layer at 18 weeks, but took them off when I red the directions which said from the first egg. I then put them back on grower until about 21 weeks or so after the feed manufacturer said it would not hurt. I recently about three weeks ago put them on Flock Raiser since Billy was not laying, along with a side of oyster shell. They also get wild bird seed spilled from the bird feeder and a little that I spread, and occasional things like sprouts and meal worms.

    Housing:Current coop is a converted rabbit hutch with shavings on the floor (It is the type with the pull out bottom.). I it kept spotless as I live in a residential neighborhood and do not want any smell, or as little as possible. The coop sits in a temporary run, but they free range all day. New coop under construction but going slow since I am working two jobs. Anyway, please let me know what you guys think.

    Now pics of Billy
    Billy:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]Tilly for Comparison: NOTE THAT THE PIC BELOW IS OF SISTER BILLY WHO HAS BEEN LAYING SINCE DECEMBER 3RD.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2016
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    She will lay. Some are just slower at maturing than others.
     
  3. Cel45

    Cel45 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I sure hope so. It is funny how different they can be.
     
  4. smcdermott

    smcdermott Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just a thought, ((I am new to this, only had chickens for 14 months now)) but I immediately noticed that Billy's comb and waddle were so much more under underdeveloped than Tilly's were.
    Where did you get them? I got some Buff orpingtons from a local feed store and had the same thing happen, a few developed perfectly, laying on time and everything. Then I had 2 that didn't lay until much later and had smaller combs and waddles. When I went back and asked what could be taking them so long to start laying, she explained that they get them from a local breeder and not a big named one. So some could be ((not necessarily)) show quality. When I asked what that meant she said that some could be non-pure bread. They still lay great (and mine have!) but are not as high quality as the others. Their combs and waddles got a smidge bigger but have never gotten to be as big as they should, like I said though, they lay beautifully and I even had one go broody and hatch me a clutch of 16 babies. She was a wonderful mother. Hope this helps some.
     
  5. AuntNomi

    AuntNomi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a flock of 8 hens, all but one started laying in August. They are different breeds, leghorn, RSL, BSL, and an Australorpe. The Australorpe has yet to lay an egg. I think that they just mature on an individual rate sometimes. She kinda just hangs out and follows them around , not very outgoing like the rest of them. They are 10 months old right now. When March comes around if she is not laying I am swapping her out for some other chicks, so she has 2 months to go around here. She's really sweet, but I want mine to lay eggs as well.
     
  6. Cel45

    Cel45 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, these two are both from the feed store, bought at 18 weeks. They both come from Ideal. Yeah, you never know. I do like her, but she needs to start laying at some point to stay on the roster.
     
  7. Cel45

    Cel45 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    AuntNomi, Billy is a feisty chicken as Production Reds can be. Tilly is really. Indeed to her, but I need eggs from them all seeing that I live in a small residential neighborhood and need as much bang for my buck as possible. Time will tell I guess. Thanks for the help.
     
  8. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    She looks like a slow developer. Question is, how long is too long to wait i guess, and only you can make that call. Crockpot or wait...

    CT
     
  9. AuntNomi

    AuntNomi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I feel your pain. I have a guy here in my area that will swap chicks out for grown chickens. He gives 2 chicks for roos, and 4 for hens. So if mine is not laying by the time she is a year old my plan is to trade her to him for the chicks.
     
  10. dekel18042

    dekel18042 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    X2, plus SOME (not all) who would start laying when the days are shorter will wait until the days get longer to start laying. I've found as a rule, hatching chicks in Jan or Feb so they mature during longer days seems to aid in earlier laying with most laying by five months. The one who mature in winter can take up to 8 months and I've even had some go over that.
     

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