Does winter arrest layer development or just slow it down?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chango, Nov 14, 2015.

  1. chango

    chango Out Of The Brooder

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    May 20, 2015
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    I have 7 red sex-link hens that are now 24 weeks old. At exactly 20 weeks, one of the girls started laying and has blessed me with an egg every single day since. The other 6 - zilch, nada. Just about the time the first girl started laying, cold weather descended (40-50's during the day, 20's at night).

    So I know the colder weather along with the shorter days slows down development, but it seems to have come to a full stop. The comb and wattles on most of the other girls are not fully developed and seem to have stopped growing completely. Have they missed a warm-weather window and won't produce eggs till spring, or do I just need to be a little more patient? Or am I possibly doing something wrong. Not sure I want to go the artificial light route.

    Many thanks for any help.
     
  2. Rod-T

    Rod-T Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They need 14 hrs of light a day.. so some lights to come on early would help
     
  3. chango

    chango Out Of The Brooder

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    And what would be the outcome if they remain with natural light?
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2015
  4. Rod-T

    Rod-T Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You only have what 8 hrs of daylight?
    So you need 6 hrs of artificial light
     
  5. Rod-T

    Rod-T Chillin' With My Peeps

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    14 hrs is needed for them to lay... if you don't care Wethersfield or not they lay in winter... they'll be fine with out it
     
  6. chango

    chango Out Of The Brooder

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    I think I understand. But how about the one hen that is laying every day? She's not getting 14 hours of light.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2015
  7. Rod-T

    Rod-T Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are they getting layer all they want?
     
  8. chango

    chango Out Of The Brooder

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    During the day the have access to all the layer feed and water they want. At night, they have no food or water.
     
  9. Rod-T

    Rod-T Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sometimes it takes longer for some.. more then the 24 weeks... but I'd plan on a light.. maybe come on at 2 am off at 7.. try that see if that helps..
     
  10. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Usually the first season of laying requires no light, it's after their first adult molt that light will help them resume laying sooner than normal. I would suspect that the rest will start laying soon. I would personally put them back on a non medicated grower as sex links seem to require more protein than other breeds, as well as your hens are still maturing and need the protein to finish growing and to start laying. Make sure to offer a separate dish of oyster shell, they will eat it as needed.
     

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