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Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by JAPJRGIRL21, Sep 25, 2010.
At what age should I be expecting my turkeys to begin laying eggs?
Most will not lay there first egg until the spring after they are hatched. My spring and fall turkeys all wait until the spring. It is not like a chicken that based on age.
It depends on when you hatch them out, It you hatched them Jan/Feb they will lay a few eggs for you in the fall, they are sexually mature at 7 to 8 months, so their egg laying IS based on age. Our birds start laying in Jan here in the south, the further north you are the later they will start laying.
JAPJRGIRL21 have you seen the new ALBC Master breeding manual? http://albc-usa.org/documents/MasterBreeder/turkeys_combined.pdf
from page 19.
Choose hens that reach sexual maturity by 28 weeks of age and are ready to breed at the appropriate time of year. Turkeys do have some breeding seasonality which is variable with latitude and weather conditions.
For example in Central Kansas the following varieties will, on average, come into lay during these months:
Bourbon Red April
Black late March/early April
Slate late March/early April
Royal Palm April or later
I don't live in Kansas but I do notice my Bourbon Reds lay later than my Bronze and Naragansett. I only raise Standard size turkeys so I can't compare what the little turkeys do.
I am glad that mine do not lay in January. I also would not want a bird that lays in January. At 5 degrees all my eggs would be ice cubes. Any early eggs freeze here and have to be thrown away. If by chance any poults hatched, I would have to keep them inside for 4 months or they would be popsicles too.
I was under the assumption that the weather had a lot to do with when turkeys lay eggs but my Bourbons laid eggs a full six weeks after the Midgets (who were hatched at the same time).
Weather is a factor and so is size of the bird (bigger birds mature later), Age is a huge factor in my experience, and the length of daylight. Length of daylight you can pick apart, I'm in Eastern, NC and people are in the mid west at the same latitude so that equals same length of daylight. But it's warmer here so my birds start to lay sooner. Lor you are in CO same latitude as what? NY or PA? and at a higher altitude you are going to get more sun that somebody as sea level. So I agree with you that weather has more effect on laying. It's like the MPG rating in your car.... do you really get that or do you figure it out for yourself?
PS nice to see you posting more here. and email me some cooler weather it's still in the 90's here
My turkeys don't lay in the fall at all, so I don't expect eggs until their first spring. Bourbon Reds are some of my favorites, just a beautiful temperament!
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I raise 6 varietes of heritage turkeys and they don't all start laying at the same time. The BSW's are always first and they lay the most eggs of any we raise-, followed by the Midget Whites (another small variety), Then the Hollands and Royal Palms, Bourbons next the Bronze always last.
Quote:So if I don't want frozen eggs all over the place, would it be best to stick with the varieties that you mentioned lay later? Right now I have White Hollands and a Regal Red. I also have Buffs on my dream list...