Can't seem to find a reason why one hen has stopped laying!?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by aibbam, May 29, 2016.

  1. aibbam

    aibbam Out Of The Brooder

    34
    0
    24
    Jul 12, 2015
    I have an 18 month old speckledy hen (Rhode Island Red crossed with a Maran). I've had pretty much an egg a day from her since she started laying as a pullet. About 2 months ago she's stopped laying.

    A couple of times after she first stopped laying i remember looking into the coop at night to check they'd all put themselves to bed and they'd be a soft shelled egg under the perch were she was roosting [​IMG] Thought it was a bit odd but just cleaned it up each time and didn't think anything more. About a week ago i was in the garden and my leghorn was running about with an egg membrane and all the others were chasing her about, i looked under the bush where they were all chilling before all the commotion and there was an egg white and yolk by were my speckledy was still standing. They've never laid anywhere other than the nest box before. So in total i think she's laid about 4 soft shelled eggs in about 1 1/2-2 months, other than that, nothing.

    She's acting fine, looking good, acting exactly as before when she was laying. I have caught her going into the nest box a couple of times during the afternoon and sitting there for about 20 minutes and then coming out and carrying on with the usual. She's never been broody or had a moult before, but she's not spending time in the coop during the day and she's not losing any feathers.

    My chickens are free range, have woodland, grassy lawns, plenty of soil to dig in, sandy areas to dust bath in (which she was doing yesterday). I give them layers pellets in the morning and then corn/maize in the evening, water which i put ACV with mother in and once a month i do a week of Nettex Vit Boost + Poultry Tonic with Added Seaweed, they also have a dish of oyster shell. They're all wormed with flubenvet every 3 months.

    Any help with this would be great,
    Thanks in advance
    Amber [​IMG]
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,525
    7,736
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    What is the protein percentage of your layer feed?
    I'd cut out everything but the feed and plain, clean water for 3 weeks and see what you get.
     
  3. aibbam

    aibbam Out Of The Brooder

    34
    0
    24
    Jul 12, 2015
    The feed is Heygates Country layers pellets with 16% protein and 5% fibre. Some days i do forget about the corn in the evenings so the layers pellets is all she'll eat throughout the day, apart from grass etc from free-ranging. I'll give them plain water too for a bit and see.
     
  4. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

    2,083
    204
    271
    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    A hen that is 18 months old is likely molting. She has probably been laying for over a year to 14 months.
     
  5. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    You should not ration the food morning and night, they should have free choice access to the layer feed all day as much as they want to eat...
     
  6. aibbam

    aibbam Out Of The Brooder

    34
    0
    24
    Jul 12, 2015
    I got another soft shelled egg today found in the bedding but yesterday i got an actual egg from her!
    We put out the layers pellets in the morning before i let them out the coop, the pellets are out for them all day so they're not rationed with their feed.
    If she's molting surely she'd be loosing feathers?..because she's not [​IMG]
     
  7. aibbam

    aibbam Out Of The Brooder

    34
    0
    24
    Jul 12, 2015
    And yet another soft shelled egg in the bedding this morning when i let them out the coop....
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,525
    7,736
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    It could take a week or more after changing the diet for a change to be seen in the eggs.
    Sometimes there will be a run of funky eggs before the finally stop laying to molt.

    Since she stopped laying 2 months ago, she may have gone thru a soft molt (that you didn't recognize as a molt) and is now getting back into laying which can also produce some funky eggs until she back in sync.

    Or she could have a physical malfunction that will never be resolved....only time will tell, and sometimes it takes a long time to come to a conclusion
     
  9. aibbam

    aibbam Out Of The Brooder

    34
    0
    24
    Jul 12, 2015
    Annnnd another soft shelled egg this evening...
    I just hope she's ok and wanted to know if there was anything i could do to help. I'll just have to carry on as usual and hope she gets back to normal soon.
     
  10. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Stick to a strict diet of layer and if it doesn't get better she might just have an egg making defect...
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by