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Egg laying, two years?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by henney, Dec 28, 2008.

  1. henney

    henney Songster

    Aug 9, 2008
    Reno Nevada
    My daughter said she heard that chickens only lay eggs for 18mths. Is that true? I heard they lay for 2 years then taper off. Also, what can you do when they stop laying. We don't want to cull, they are pets, is their a organization you can donate them to if you had to:)Thanks
  2. Omran

    Omran Songster

    Jul 26, 2008
    Bagdad KY
    Quote:Actuelly, they will lay longer than two years, but they might slow quite a lot, means man might get an egg every few days from an older hen, but some hens might surprise you.

  3. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Start slowing down after two years of laying... I've loved this site and the work and love put into it.

    Time Line of a Chicken
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2008
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Yep, they slow down after about 18 months. 18 months is how long commercial birds are used before sent to soup.
  5. henney

    henney Songster

    Aug 9, 2008
    Reno Nevada
    I read the link on timeline of a chicken's life, very interesting, thanks!
  6. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    Birds, at least some of them, don't just use up all the ova available and cease to lay. I know that some birds become post-reproductive with well over 50% of the egg-producing potential still residing in their ovaries. But, many can continue producing eggs into what might be thought of as old age.

    While it may be true with mammals that the female "uses up what she's got and she's done" - that's not really true with birds. No longer being a "spring chicken" would be a result of some other cause (along with those advancing years [​IMG]).

    For the short-term: I read of a British study that showed that production drops about 30% in the 2nd laying period and then drops another 30% in the 3rd laying period. When they are down around 50% from their prime, laying hens would probably have no commercial value, whatsoever.

    What value they may have for you would be a question you would have to answer for yourself [​IMG].

  7. GALEX

    GALEX Hatching

    Feb 20, 2010
    I'm already stressing over this 2 year thing, and I won't even have my first chickens until next week. The woman I'm buying my chicks from says she puts an add on-line and people come and pick up her 2-yr old chickens for roasting. That's something I'll have to consider. I want my chickens to contribute to my food supply, not drain it. But I'm also an animal lover, so this permaculture thing is going to be tough...
  8. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps AutumnBreezeChickens.com

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    My hens are 2 now and I am getting 5-7 eggs every day from the 10 of them. They have slowed but I also believe some of them are moulting too. I'm getting a new crew in and the old crew is getting a new home down the street and we get to visit them [​IMG] They just want enough eggs for their family of three...my crew can take care of that [​IMG]
  9. Cacklin" Hens

    Cacklin" Hens Songster

    Jan 26, 2010
    Quote:Chickens will lay longer then two years. After about 18 months it drops off, but they get bigger.
  10. Penturner

    Penturner Songster

    Feb 1, 2010
    Reno Nevada
    According to that list the Rooster has Hackles at 18 weeks I think it was. but then it says first molt is at 6 months. are these first hackles actually fully in at 18 weeks? Just starting? and or are they actually the full color they will have as say a one year old Rooster would have. I am asking because man that is fast feathering compared to some other birds I am more familiar with. for example my starling had juvenile feathering for almost the first year before bringing on the full adult feathers. He was a He so he had a little more flash when he did though.

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