Egg Laying Question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mjdtexan, Jan 20, 2009.

  1. mjdtexan

    mjdtexan Songster

    Sep 30, 2008
    My girls are not laying yet as they are only 12 weeks old today.

    I've been reading about some of yall who give more light during the winter months in an effort to keep your hens from slowing down the egg laying process.

    My question is this, ┬┐do yall think that this may shorten their egg laying years or not? I know they slow down during the winter and it seems to me that they might use this time to recover from high laying seasons. I dunno, thats why I am asking yall

    Mike D
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2009

  2. CovenantCreek

    CovenantCreek Chicks Rule!

    Oct 19, 2007
    Franklin, TN
    Well, it's probably true that they only have a specific number of eggs to lay during their lifetime. So in effect, laying all winter probably does shorten the overall length of their laying days. My RSLs were laying every day before I put the light in their coop -- adding the light helped some to lay earlier in the day rather than late in the afternoon, and one to wake up and get to a nest box before laying. My Delaware girls got up to full speed back in November without any light. I just put a light in there last week so they'd have the benefit of being awake at least a few minutes before I open their door in the morning.
  3. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    I will tell you that all the lights in the world wouldn not encourage my girls to lay. My EE has been on strike since the end of October and we are only getting 1-2 eggs a day from the 6 layers. I also have 6 21 week olds that are just about to start......
  4. mjdtexan

    mjdtexan Songster

    Sep 30, 2008
    Quote:Your avatar is creepy. Congradulations on your 21 week olds that are about to lay.
  5. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    A hen's ovary contains thousands of oocytes which may or may not develop into eggs. Obviously, a hen does not lay thousands of eggs during a lifetime so many of these do not develop and are reabsorbed by the body.

    There are other reasons for a hen to cease laying than that she has "run out of eggs." Of course, a reason may be the result of producing a huge number of eggs during her life up until that time. Damage may occur to the hen's reproductive system.

    What would be a "huge number of eggs" in a domestic hen when a wild hen would only lay a couple dozen at most? Through artificial selection, the hen is genetically capable of producing 10 times the number eggs, or more, as her wild sister.


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