Determining who is laying

BlueShadow

Songster
5 Years
Jun 13, 2015
476
368
186
Nebraska
I know that not all of my hens are great layers. In fact, I am pretty sure at least one of the birds isn't laying at all (I have 12 hens, never ever get more than 11 eggs, but average 6-7 per day).

12 hens total:
7 Buckeye pullets (hatched 2016)
1 2-year Buckeye (hatched 2015)
4 2-year Barnevelders (hatched 2015)

I have read The Call of the Hen and Storey's Guide to Chickens, Storey's Guide to Poultry. They all give similar advice for determining who is laying and who is not. But when I go out to check on my hens, I find birds like this:
Wide span between pelvic bones
Narrow pelvic bones
Deep abdomen (4-5 inch span between pevic bones and keel)

And then her shanks, eyelids, and beak are all yellow.

:barnie They didn't read the books on what they are supposed to do. I am so confused. Can anyone help?
 

peopleRanimals2

Songster
Jun 30, 2015
654
99
121
Rhode Island
Hens don't lay once a day. Usually it takes 25+ hours to make an egg and lay it, so 11 eggs for 12 hens a day is impressive! About 7 eggs a day for 12 hens is a normal amount.
 

BlueShadow

Songster
5 Years
Jun 13, 2015
476
368
186
Nebraska
I know I am getting an okay number of eggs from my flock. But I also know that some hens are laying far better than others, and I would like to keep those birds for breeding. The lazy hens, well, I am out of chicken stock in my freezer and sure would like some more. So I still am interested in determining who are the lazy birds.
 

Abriana

Spicy Sugar Cookie
Apr 26, 2017
5,117
55,947
1,217
Midgard
You can nest trap them. When a hen goes into the nesting box, she springs the trap and it closes a door and she cannot get out until you release her. This also means that you will need to check several times per day to make sure no hen is in there for too long-this may be too difficult though as you couldn't leave for work all day or go somewhere.
 

bald Rooster

Songster
Oct 18, 2016
491
720
171
Orlando area
You can nest trap them. When a hen goes into the nesting box, she springs the trap and it closes a door and she cannot get out until you release her. This also means that you will need to check several times per day to make sure no hen is in there for too long-this may be too difficult though as you couldn't leave for work all day or go somewhere.

This is a great idea!
I have over 50 hens Different ages none over two. I am getting anywhere from 25 to 35 eggs a day. The older hens have had a very sporadic molt and some are at the worst of it right now.I feel like bringing the poor things in on the cold nights.
I can see the pinkish combos on some and I know there not laying.
I also know some of my pullets are just getting started because of the small and sometimes odd eggs.
But the trap idea on a weekend I'm home working around my place is a perfect idea to find ones that need to be culled!
 

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