Chickens not laying... (Stressed?)

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Dobsranch, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. Dobsranch

    Dobsranch New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Jan 18, 2013
    Florida
    About four weeks ago i moved the chickens to a new bigger run. from 8 hens i was getting 4-7 eggs a day which is normal. since i moved them a few things have happened. I made a new set of nesting boxes, we have added 4 new hens and 2 weeks ago a hawk attacked and killed a hen in the run. its also been a little colder this last week. we went from 4-7 eggs to 2 for the last 3 weeks. and yesterday there was none. the hens are going into and laying in the new nesting boxes and making divots in the hay. I'm trying to figure out if there just not laying because all of the stress i just caused them or if possibly i have a egg eater? when you have a egg eater are there any traces of a egg being eaten? if there not laying because of stress and the weather how long does that usually last? its been about a week.. this is only my second winter with chickens so I'm kinda new.. thanks
     
  2. wastintime202

    wastintime202 Chillin' With My Peeps

    124
    5
    93
    Apr 30, 2011
    I had an egg eater for a very short while. lol. I always found broken egg shells in the nest box with just the contents eaten. Got rid of that sucker quick.
     
  3. Dobsranch

    Dobsranch New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Jan 18, 2013
    Florida
    OK i haven't found any evidence of a egg eater but then again Ive never had one. when you do have one do they usually eat just one egg or will they eat several in a day?
     
  4. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

    9,279
    727
    321
    Apr 11, 2011
    Tn
    You should check for rodents or other birds before you automatically think egg eater. When I've given my birds eggs, they eat everything including the shells, usually leaving behind just a tiny bit of wetness or yolk residue. When I had a mouse problem, the eggs were busted open, contents eaten and shells left behind. That being said, this is the time of year most hens naturally slow down. There just isn't enough daylight hours for them to lay consistently. Plus, like you said, you've moved them. Chickens are creatures of habit, and I've found that even moving their feed and water can throw them off. Give them a while to settle in to their new surroundings and wait for the days to get longer. I'd also take a good look around that new larger run and inside the coop to make sure they aren't hiding them. Just bc some are using the new nests, doesn't mean they all are....good luck.
    Nikki
     
  5. babicombe

    babicombe New Egg

    4
    0
    7
    Feb 18, 2014
    Santa Cruz, CA
    I think stress is the operative word here. Chickens ARE creatures of habit. I had a bobcat attack on my flock of 4 one night about 5 weeks ago. The hens were laying 2-3 eggs/day (they are 1 yr old). One hen was killed and two disappeared that night .Next day one came back. 4 days later I bought 3 new hens, already laying. They continued to lay for about 4 days, 2-3 eggs. Another chicken who I thought had been killed showed up 5 days after the attack! Where the heck was she?!! The 3 new hens have since slowed WAY down on laying.

    So now there are 6 hens and the small henhouse is full. It maxes out at 6, I think. I'm only getting 1-3 or 4 eggs in a day. I think stress and having to all share this new space together will take them some time to work out. Plus the weather got colder and it rained for the first time in forever (Santa Cruz, CA). So hang in there! Spring is coming.
     
  6. lantanahill

    lantanahill New Egg

    1
    0
    6
    Nov 20, 2016
    I lost several hens to fox attack 3 weeks ago. The remaining 5 hens are just now acting more normal, but haven't laid a single egg since. Is this possibly a permanent issue?
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by