Egg Laying, Lights and Winter

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickflick'92, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. chickflick'92

    chickflick'92 Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 13, 2008
    New York
    I've read a few forums about lights and I was wondering if they have impact on my chickens laying eggs. I keep the light on for the chickens in the barn all the time and don't shut it off unless its warm. They've had a light on them since they were babies nonstop. They go to bed at night and they wake up in the morning when i come into the barn. It's winter time now and I don't want them to get cold or my water to freeze. My chickens are almost 5 months old and they haven't layed any eggs yet. I'm wondering if the light and winter is impacting them. Thanks for reading!![​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2009
  2. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 15, 2008
    White/yellow light 24/7 is not healthy. It will cause stress and interrupt their cycle. You should use red lamps if you want heat at night or a blue or red night light. They need about 14hrs of light to lay with a period of darkness to sleep. In the winter many areas don't get close to 14hrs so adding some light does help increase laying. We get about 9hrs right now. Sunrise 7:30, sunset 4:45 today. Although 2 of my pullets have decided to start laying anyway. If you add light for laying it needs to be bright enough you can read a newspaper at the level the animals are and best added in the morning. If the light just goes from bright to darkness in the evening chickens tend to panic and not make it on the roosts.
  3. Dawn419

    Dawn419 Lost in the Woods

    Apr 16, 2007
    Evening Shade, AR
    Hi and Welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    I agree with Akane about the lights.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2009
  4. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    [​IMG] I see you have been lurking for awhile. This is a wonderful web site. I keep a 11 watt red sign light bulb on 24/7 in both of my coops. I have a 25 watt regular light that goes on around 5am in the big girls coop and off at about 9 am. I pretty much get an egg a day from all of them. When I do use a heat lamp I use a red 250 watt in a brooder lamp that is rated for 250 watts. I only use it when the forcast is for freezing weather.
  5. rypie13

    rypie13 Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 6, 2008
    We put a timer on our light out there. It comes on at 6 a.m. and off again at 10 p.m. (we have a lot of grey days in the winter)
    They have continued to lay almost everyday. I was surprised that right before Christmas our last one started to lay. We thought she was going to hold out for warmer weather (free loader) But, she is doing a good job, and making sure everyone knows it!
  6. chickflick'92

    chickflick'92 Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 13, 2008
    New York
    Thanks for the responses. I put the red light on since its 10 degrees here and they're enjoying it.
  7. sara

    sara Title Needed Here


    Yes, chickens need a certain amount of daylight to produce eggs. I don't use lights to keep my girls laying as I like them to go through natural laying cycles. Of course this is why I hardly get any eggs all winter.

    Please also bear in mind that 5 months, 20 weeks in only the start of egg laying. Many pullets take much longer than that to get going.
  8. jhc

    jhc Out Of The Brooder

    May 25, 2007
    Have my light come on 4:30am so that they will get sufficient light. Shuts off at 8:00am. Cold has not affected their laying. In fact my 3 of my young hens have just started laying in the midst of the cold stretch here in the Northeast. 9 eggs today 12 hens.
  9. Quote:We do the same. Normally we get 5 from 5. But today we only got 3. We provide NO heat...I wonder if the 0 degree thing is getting ahold?

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