Can chickens start laying early??

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by dolphinlvr4, Feb 9, 2013.

  1. dolphinlvr4

    dolphinlvr4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have three 3.5 mo old barred rocks hens and one has the very red cheeks and has been acting a lil diff latly. Last night she was doing that odd clucking sound, turning in her box as if she might be getting ready to lay for the first time but she's only 3.5 mos old. Do they start this behavior long before they lay or only right before? My first chickens ever n I'm so clueless as to what to look for as in signs of them being ready to lay. Ty all for any input. I'm on egg watch! Lol. :)
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

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    They usually start trying out the nest box about a week before. That's very early but not unheard of. I think 14 weeks is the earliest I've heard of but probably not a record. I don't encourage it and if I have a flock of just pullets, I try to keep them on short days until about 20 weeks. If they're with hens it is what it is.
     
  3. dolphinlvr4

    dolphinlvr4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes they are all girls and I've noticed that this last week only 2 of the 3 are Rodney cheeked but the one has really red cheeks. Plus they have started eating like line backers! I'm feeding crumble l, scratch and crickets ( once a week cuz they don't free range) and plenty of fresh veg and fruit scraps but they always act like they are starving. They get locked in the coop at sunset w water and get let out as soon as the sun comes up. Am I seeing changes just cuz of maturing or am I just clueless n this is what chickens do? Lol.
     
  4. dolphinlvr4

    dolphinlvr4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Supposed to be rosey cheeked. Sry
     
  5. obsessedwchicks

    obsessedwchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our chickens never lay until like 6 months. I guess it depends on the chickens? I know our 4-5 month old chickens have been laying in the nesting boxes a lot, but I think they just think their for "roost"!
     
  6. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Do you have pictures of your birds?
     
  7. yinepu

    yinepu Overrun With Chickens

    it depends on the bloodlines and on the breeds

    I've had chickens start laying as early as 12 weeks.. but those were very rare occurances.. Normally ours start around 14 to 16 weeks.. some breeds will also start to lay much later than that
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  8. obsessedwchicks

    obsessedwchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I want those kind of chickens! hahaha, I keep looking in our hatch that we did in october, I keep looking for them to start laying any time soon.
     
  9. dolphinlvr4

    dolphinlvr4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I purposely bought golden buffs because they r basically a hybrid and perfect for beginners. They say between 16-20 weeks they should start laying and they are only 14 weeks old but sometimes one of them does that weird clucking n goes in circles in the nesting box. I didn't put the nesting box in til I saw this behavior cuz my friend ( she is experienced ) told me not to put them in there to early or they will roost in it. My nesting " boxes" are 5 gal buckets. I just wanted something I could clean easier. So far, no eggs. ;-/.
     
  10. obsessedwchicks

    obsessedwchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You should be getting some soon though! Be patient, that's what I'm gonna have to do with my hens. Be patient…. I absolutely hate WINTER. They aren't really at their best when laying during the winter.
     

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