Egg production after molting?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by motheroffive, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. motheroffive

    motheroffive New Egg

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    I have 10 laying hens that are 16 months old. I believe that some of them are molting. I went from 6 - 8 eggs per day down to 2 or 3 eggs per day and some scraggily looking birds. I have tried to give them more protein but it doesn't seem to affect the egg production so I guess I have to wait it out. My question is "How many eggs can I expect to get after they're finished molting?" I need to gather at least 5 per day to make it cost effective when feeding them the organic laying mash. If they won't produce that much after a molt then I might as well get rid of them and purchase younger hens. (ie, keep a few of my special dual purpose birds for layers and not butcher them as meat birds.)
     
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    For year old hens after molting, I would expect about the same number of eggs, for 2-3 year old hens I would expect an egg or so less per week. They say that a five year old hen lays half or less of what she does in her prime, and it goes down every year. It does take them awhile to get going again after molting, a month or two, and this time of year, since they are in their second year and with the shorter daylight hours it may take them longer than usual. Extra protein will help in that it will help them grow feathers and get through molt in better shape. If you are going to rotate them, I would have them on supplemental lighting, keep them through the next laying cycle, get replacement chicks in the spring and cull the older ones next year when they go into molt. A lot of people do a three year cycle, where they replace 1/3 of their laying flock every year.
     
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  3. cluckcluckgirl

    cluckcluckgirl Queen of the Coop Premium Member

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    Tending to my chickens
    Hit the nail on the head.
    [​IMG]
     
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    My American Domiques (a dual purpose heritage breed) produce easily 5+ eggs / week / hen during first season of laying. Same hens as 2 year olds during subsequent season which starts once new feathers are completely in produce roughly 4 eggs / week / hen. The following year I am getting at least 3 eggs / week per hen and that is in the face of having many of the older hens being allowed to go broody. A production layer even when a couple years old should blow the doors off my best hens in their prime but long-term the dual purpose my do better owing to longevity differences.

    Nutrition is very important as is heat stress.
     
  5. motheroffive

    motheroffive New Egg

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    Apr 25, 2013
    Thank you for your helpful replies. I understood that you shouldn't mix flocks because they won't get along well together, so how do you replace 1/3 of your layers every year? I need them to share the same coop.
     
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I mix them multiple times per year with minimal trouble. I prefer to stock older birds on top of younger and when possible introduce the older birds either singly or in small numbers over multiple days. First introduced birds have too many targets to damage and do suppress of subsequent stocked birds. When flock sizes are of comparable ages, then I like to rearrange coop at time of introduction so no body is on home turf.
     
  7. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    like centrarchid hinted at once the molt is over you should get 6 or maybe 7 eggs per day from 10 hens that are rising two year olds.
     
  8. Chickens R Us

    Chickens R Us Chillin' With My Peeps

    So when I mix my older birds with my new flock should I wait until they are done molting or does it matter? I don't want to stress them out more than necessary.
     
  9. smlfarmer

    smlfarmer Out Of The Brooder

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    ok I have a question to add my 2 year olds molted for the first time this year ( back in late spring ) and still no eggs?
     
  10. retiredwithchicks

    retiredwithchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am having problems also. I have 30+ chickens and got one egg today. Some are pullets hatched this year. I don't think they are all molting. I know several are but not all. I can't figure it out.
     

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