Egg production has fallen off drastically

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kwhites634, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. kwhites634

    kwhites634 Father Time Premium Member

    My flock of 10 Rhode Island Reds and 10 Barred Rocks has gone from a normal egg production of 15-19 per day early in the summer down to the 3 eggs I got today.

    This is a free range flock that roams and forages by day and is locked up at night. I've occasionally had them lay their eggs in brushpiles and other hiding places around the barn, but the other day I left them penned up all day so they couldn't hide eggs, and still only got 4 or 5.

    All these birds, with a single exception, were bought as peeps from the local Southern States two Springs ago; they're about a year and a half old now, and should be in their prime laying years, I'd think.

    Any and all comments and advice greatly appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. Colored Egg Farmer

    Colored Egg Farmer Chicken overload

    Where are you located... The most probable reason for they is there going on a vacation or a molt since the seasons are changing.
     
  3. kwhites634

    kwhites634 Father Time Premium Member

    I'm in Maryland. They were doing fine 'til about the middle of the summer; since then they've gone steadily downhill
     
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    If I'm not mistaken, 18 months is prime time for a moult. That and the decrease in daylight hours with winter approaching is more than likely your answer for decreased egg production.
     
  5. Colored Egg Farmer

    Colored Egg Farmer Chicken overload

    Yea they might be just getting ready for winter. Do you have any artificial light for them.
     
  6. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    Gritsar is right - 1 1/2 is right about the time they molt for the first time. It is probably a combination of that and the cooler weather.
     
  7. kwhites634

    kwhites634 Father Time Premium Member

    No, no artificial light yet.

    I've got more problems than simply decreasing light; as I say, this has been getting stadily worse since mid-summer. I've had chickens before, and have never experienced such a drastic, prolonged drop-off in production
     
  8. Colored Egg Farmer

    Colored Egg Farmer Chicken overload

    OK so its been dropping all summer? have you had any mystery dead chickens? sick hens?
     
  9. kwhites634

    kwhites634 Father Time Premium Member

    Maybe it IS just a molt and seasonal change; I sure hope so. Thanks, everyone, for the input
     
  10. kwhites634

    kwhites634 Father Time Premium Member

    No, no dead hens or apparent sickness; they all seem healthy enough.
     

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