Eggs laying drop off second year.

tralfaz

Chirping
Apr 9, 2020
141
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73
New Jersey
Planning for next year, six chickens seem to be the perfect amount for our family but know there's a drop off in the second year of egg laying. If mine were laying 200 eggs a year. Typically what's the drop off in year two and three? Also when will they stop laying and what's the typical longevity of a RI red hybrid?
 

Acre4Me

Free Ranging
Nov 12, 2017
5,192
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Western Ohio
How old are your chickens now?

Have they molted yet?

If they are a 2020 hatch, then they should lay through this winter, then through next summer. But, will likely go into a molt fall or winter 2021. Often a hens eggs get larger when they are older.

As far as longevity and laying, I cannot answer that. My RC-RIR is only 1.5 years old.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
Nov 27, 2012
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Planning for next year, six chickens seem to be the perfect amount for our family but know there's a drop off in the second year of egg laying. If mine were laying 200 eggs a year. Typically what's the drop off in year two and three? Also when will they stop laying and what's the typical longevity of a RI red hybrid?
Guessing this number came from some breed chart?
It's only an estimate and is an annual average as after the first winter they won't lay over winter unless you use lights...even then they still need to molt and have a break.
If you want eggs year round, I'd suggest getting new pullets every early spring, they should start laying as the older ones start to molt. Course then you'll have a plethora of eggs in spring and summer and fewer over the winter.
I'v been trying to balance this out for 7 years, and concluded that eggs are a seasonal food.
We plan, the chickengods laugh! :D
 

tralfaz

Chirping
Apr 9, 2020
141
117
73
New Jersey
No, my meaning is if 6 chickens produce roughly 1200 eggs total this year and if they slow to 50% the second year would mean I should expect 600 eggs for the same hens next year. So if I want to keep 1200 next year, then it means I should get 3 more chickens next year to maintain that quota. What I don't know on average, is whether 50% is the correct drop off in egg production or is it more or less? What about year 3 and 4 for the same chickens?
 

Folly's place

Enabler
Sep 13, 2011
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southern Michigan
The answer is; it depends. Generally many hens will produce fewer eggs each year, and to plan ahead, adding a few at least every other year will help keep your egg production better. Lights in winter, 4am to 8am, help to keep mature birds in lay, although there's nothing 'sure' about any of this.
If you plan to eat your birds and replace them every other year, always having some new chicks annually, that should maximize your production with the fewest birds.
If you keep at least some nice hens much longer, then you will have more birds, including youngsters, and that works too, although it's not as cost effective.
Many of us like our birds, and keep at least some of them for life. I value the broody hens, and the mature birds who teach the youngsters how to get along, and don't get rid of birds who have done good in my flock.
Mary
 

rosemarythyme

Crossing the Road
Jul 3, 2016
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WA, Pac NW
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It's hard to gauge because they're living creatures, and each one is biologically programmed a little different than the others, even if same breed.

For my older hens (and I don't have production hybrids) I had one stop laying completely at 3 yrs old. The other two dropped from roughly 5-6 eggs a week at 2 yrs old, to about 4 a week at 3 yrs old, to 3 a week at 4 yrs old.
 

Folly's place

Enabler
Sep 13, 2011
21,570
33,021
1,036
southern Michigan
Many birds, especially high producing hens, develop serious (fatal) health issues at three to four years of age. Some will live much longer, and a few will stay in egg production longer, and those hens should reproduce!
Knowing ahead of time who they will be can't be done.
Mary
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
Apr 9, 2016
13,602
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California's Redwood Coast
I don't know and have never seen anyone provide hard numbers...
...because live animals don't follow the number charts.
This is the basic truth and NO matter what hatcheries claim.. I never ever see egg production on par with their claims in MY natural setting. 3 hens per year replacement might be good enough for you.

So far my replacement hens don't lay when they should or seem to care what our books say they should do.. I cannot believe at 33 weeks old on lock down.. I've only gotten 2 egg in the last 2 weeks from 4 ladies.. with most my links stating hens will be a peak production around 30 weeks. They're seriously messing with my hatching plans! :he

Anyways, I haven't seen anything I consider reliable and solid information with regard to alleged egg production according to age mostly due to the broad range of genetics, but here are a few links to review with some interesting information..

http://www.fao.org/3/Y4628E/y4628e03.htm

https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps029#:~:...y factors can adversely affect egg production.

https://www.almanac.com/news/raising-chickens/raising-chickens-101-when-chickens-stop-laying-eggs

https://www.morningagclips.com/how-long-do-chickens-lay-eggs/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4173064/

Best wishes on your adventure! :wee
 

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