Copper Marans laying early

Paige N

In the Brooder
Sep 28, 2019
5
20
29
Redmond, Washington
Hello everyone, first post here (but I've had chickens for about 4 years). This spring I purchased 3 French Black Copper Marans. I adore them and they are so beautiful! I named them Rey, Padme & Leia.

Rey started laying at 4 months old; far sooner than my other chicks did. Beautiful little chocolate brown eggs. Leia started laying about a month later and I think Padme' just laid her first today (I had 3 browns this afternoon).

I don't heat my coop -- we don't get that cold in the winter -- or light it. My other hens (1 Speckled Sussex, 2 Easter Eggers, 1 Olive Egger didn't start laying until they were 10 or 11 months old and lay pretty consistently January through September/October.

Since the Marans started laying earlier, will they 'stop' when the weather gets colder like the other hens or lay 9 - 10 months, then 'stop' for 2-3? Just trying to figure out if I should be surprised to have eggs every day during the winter or worry if they don't stop, then stop in the spring...

Thanks!
 

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aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
97,921
134,592
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
will they 'stop' when the weather gets colder like the other hens or lay 9 - 10 months, then 'stop' for 2-3?
Only time will tell.

Rey started laying at 4 months old; far sooner than my other chicks did. Beautiful little chocolate brown eggs. Leia started laying about a month later and I think Padme' just laid her first today (I had 3 browns this afternoon).

I don't heat my coop -- we don't get that cold in the winter -- or light it. My other hens
Has more to do with length of day than temperature.
To establish a timeline, what date did Rey start laying?
 

TomZilla43

Songster
Apr 23, 2017
340
1,080
232
White House, TN
Hiya Paige, and :welcome. Love the Star Wars themed names:D. I have yet to find rhyme or reason in how hen's lay outside of the standard scientific tendencies(which my chickens often seem to ignore, I don't think they have read any chickenology books). I think you just have to see how it goes, part of the fun of it...
 

Mosey2003

Crowing
5 Years
Apr 13, 2016
3,077
4,995
391
North-Central IL
If I remember correctly.....I had a batch start laying mid-July last year, which was around 6 months of age (early for the line). Thinking back, they laid a bit over the winter but not very well at all. Then picked up some in the spring. It can go either way. Mine were under lights too.
 

oldhenlikesdogs

I Want Ice Cream
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Jul 16, 2015
45,844
80,746
1,522
Wisconsin
I feed layer organic with kitchen scraps and a few dried bugs and veg for treats. Otherwise they freerange.
You might want to try a ration with 18-20% protein. What's the protein percentage of your layer? I find feeding extras and free ranging can cause some to be protein deficient on a layer ration which is often 16% protein. Some now are 18%. I found feeding that higher protein helps to optimize laying in backyard flocks that tend to get extras.

Layer ration is formulated to be fed as the sole ration to actively laying birds. Hens that aren't laying shouldn't still get all that extra calcium that a layer provides. To me it's much easier to feed either an All Flock ration or a non medicated starter grower with a separate bowl of oyster shells for the calcium needs. They can self regulate that way.
 

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