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Combs and wattles=eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by peggyb43, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. peggyb43

    peggyb43 Out Of The Brooder

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    My 5 girls will be 20 weeks old next Sunday and no eggs yet. Their combs are mighty small and no wattles to speak of. Do the combs etc. indicate when egg laying is gonna start? So much to learn...but so much fun.
     
  2. jacyjones

    jacyjones Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes - you will find they turn from pale pink to bright red and increase in size. You will also find some of your birds will squat as they would for the cockerel and that is a good indicator. Good luck - it is fantastic when you get your first egg. [​IMG]
     
  3. chickenchickenbulkbulk

    chickenchickenbulkbulk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There combs usually turn red before they start laying. I have some hens that are 9months plus and still no egg. I believe it has to do with winter. A lot of my leghorns have stopped laying, too. The few days we had of warmer weather, they started laying more. I am not concerned about them laying right now. I am sure when the weather warms up we will have more eggs than what we know what to with. Good Luck and keep enjoying your chickens. They are great entertainment..they all have a different personality. The sweetest ones we have are our EE. The leghorns are total opposite, they don't want to be bothered with, they just want feed and left alone!!
     
  4. The Chicken Lady

    The Chicken Lady Moderator Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    What kind of hens do you have?

    One thing to go by is what breed they are (although even in the same breed, there are often differences or unusual circumstances). It is true that you can look at the comb to see if they are maturing; some breeds don't have as large or as red a comb as others, even as adults, so it might be good for you to look around BYC or Feathersite for some pics of adult birds of your breed and compare.

    To top it off, it's winter, so your ladies might not be getting enough light to be ready to lay, depending on where you live and what you have as a setup for them.

    Unfortunately, the best anyone can do to tell when chickens will begin laying -- and estimate how much they will lay -- is guess.

    I hope they start laying soon for you! [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    20 weeks is the benchmark at which they can reach sexual maturity, not a guarantee. It's a sliding scale for birds, just as it is for humans. My BLS started laying at about 25-26 weeks and my RIR and BR waited until nealry 31 weeks. My banty cochin is about 36 weeks and shows no signs of being near point of lay.

    Be patient. It stinks to wait but they will surprise you with an egg when they're ready. In the meantime, enjoy them!
     
  6. peggyb43

    peggyb43 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks All. I do enjoy them and understand about the light factor. They just live by natural light and temperature and I can only hope I'm doing the right things for them. They seem happy and kinda crazy, so I guess things are good in my chicken world.

    It's really nice to have all this expert advice at BYC. Thanks again and Happy New Year to all.
     
  7. cjstanman

    cjstanman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My BRs are 19 weeks old and from what I'm reading here on the forum, it looks like we might be getting closer. Their combs and wattles are much redder than before, and although I haven't seen them squat, they are making huge poops.
     
  8. bigmike&nan

    bigmike&nan Chillin' With My Peeps

    This YouTube video post by EXPERTVILLAGE is pretty good viewing, as are many of the other chicken related videos by these folks.




    Of course not all birds mature at the same age, diet and the amount of exercise will effect things too. I know we loved seeing our little bantam cochin lay her first egg (she does one every other day right now).

    Michael
     

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