Chickens not laying

sunnyshelmo

In the Brooder
5 Years
Jun 4, 2014
10
0
24
I've had my 2 girls for a year or so now and they've always been very reliable layers. About 1 month ago Jim, my cream legbar stopped laying and now it seems that my black rock Spock is following suit. They're fed on layers pellets, supplemented with occasional bowls of mash and treats of grapes and biscuits (blame my husband for that one!). They free range in the garden a good deal of the time so I haven't been giving them oyster shell, could this be the problem? They are lively and healthy and going everything that they normally do, so the lack of eggs is baffling me. Any hints anybody?
 

AHenNamedPepper

In the Brooder
Apr 15, 2015
37
7
26
Sharon sc
Hopefully you get some answers I have an Ameraucana and a Colombian both right at a year religious layers... everyday like clockwork... about a week ago they both stopped... nothing, nada, zip.... about that time we had a snake come through so I am hoping that is my issue but hopefully someone can stop by with some input on yours! But I would try either giving them oyster or egg shells and see if that helps! BOL!
 

Peeps61

Songster
5 Years
Apr 19, 2014
1,369
974
236
NW Florida
Your birds (both of you) are old enough to be starting a molt (can be partial or total). When this happens, there will be no eggs for a while. My 2 year old hens went through a molt - my RIR hen is still molting and not laying. One of my Orphington's went through a total molt and the other a partial molt. They did it at the same time. My RIR is going through a partial molt. She's one of my best layers, so I'll be glad when that's over with! You should feed birds that are molting high protein or grower feed.

It might be something else, but they are old enough to begin a molt.
 

sunnyshelmo

In the Brooder
5 Years
Jun 4, 2014
10
0
24
Not noticed any feather loss or feathers around the garden coop etc. I wondered if they were going to molt, but if Jim has not been laying for a few weeks wouldn't she have begun molting by now?
 

Peeps61

Songster
5 Years
Apr 19, 2014
1,369
974
236
NW Florida
Sometimes it's slow to start. My RIR hen Chickness stopped laying a good month before she started to lose feathers. She still has quite a few, but is bald in a few places.
 

cluckcluckgirl

Queen of the Coop
8 Years
Jun 16, 2012
2,982
381
336
Tending to my chickens
They can be slow to start molting. Is everything else normal? Do they poop, eat, drink, and otherwise act normal? Is either of them acting "puffed up"?

You said that they free-range. I've heard of chickens hiding eggs if they free range; have you done a thorough check?

I'm not meaning to doubt your efforts and please don't take it as such. The questions are just because if something odd is present (other than them not laying), it could be something fatal if untreated. If they're acting normal without any other signs, the best guess is that they are just taking a break or about to do a small or big molt.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
94,150
123,358
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
......

You said that they free-range. I've heard of chickens hiding eggs if they free range; have you done a thorough check?

.....
Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for 2-3 days can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. They can be confined to coop 24/7 for a few days to a week, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it.
 

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