Everyone asks this question- WHEN WILL MY HENS START LAYIN!?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by LindsayRae, Nov 15, 2015.

  1. LindsayRae

    LindsayRae Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2015
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    But I want to quit obsessing if it isnt happening!

    I have 5-6 month old chickens. 2 easter eggers(or amerucanas?), 1 barred rock, and a cochin. They all are swirlin around my big buff orpington rooster.

    They have the best life. Entire access to my back yard, and now garden, plenty of food-like yummy table scraps, and a nice clean and warm coop. My rooster is super nice and just let's them boss him around, he brings them in every night and shares snacks.

    I read this site all the time, and I feel like I am doing everything right. Considering the weather has went from summer to soak to now 27 at night all in a month, will that affect their egg-laying? Should I just wait until spring to expect any eggs? I live in Souther Pines, NC.

    My egg cartons keep piling up so high I can make a coop out of them!! haha

    If anyone knows about cold weather and new egg layers, let me know!!
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    It's not because of the cooler temps, it's because of the shorter days. Pullets that mature in the fall tend to take longer to start laying, but they will start eventually. Having said that, 5 to 6 months old is not 'late.' Easter Eggers can start laying as early as 16 weeks or as late as 7 months. Barred Rocks usually start by about 20 to 24 weeks. Cochins are slow to mature, and can take up to 8 months to start laying.
     
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  3. blumenmadchen

    blumenmadchen Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 4, 2015
    To give you a bit if hope... I had given up in my chickens for the winter, but now I have two that are laying. I'm in Washington state and its been cool, very wet and we even got our first snow this morning. My BO started laying two weeks ago at 31 weeks and has laid an egg almost everyday since. One of the EEs started just a few days ago (at about 32 weeks) although I don't know when cause I just randomly found an egg in a puddle and its been raining too much to look for more! We had our first while family meal with the eggs for lunch today[​IMG] Don't give up hope on your girls!
     
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  4. LindsayRae

    LindsayRae Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2015
    Southern Pines, NC
    Thank you for the info! I see the barred rock and cochin with really red faces, and think it's time!! But not yet!! My rooster has been laying in the nest boxes from time to time. Just clucking away- I thought maybe that was a sign. . . . I will continue to spoil these feathery either way!
     
  5. Skylercarr

    Skylercarr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can put a golf ball or ping pong ball in the nesting box this can sometimes get them to lay.
     
  6. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    The golf ball (dummy egg) will help show them where to lay, but it will not induce laying.
     
  7. Skylercarr

    Skylercarr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    For me it helped them to start laying.
     
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    If they started laying after you added the golf balls, it's more likely they were already laying, just not in the nest boxes where you wanted them to lay.
     
  9. LindsayRae

    LindsayRae Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2015
    Southern Pines, NC
    I already did the golfball thing and my rooster lays on them! Hah
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    The cock/erel may be showing them where to lay by getting in the nest.
    If you free range, you might want to confine them to the coop to habituate them to laying in the coop nests.

    Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for 2-3 days can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. They can be confined to coop 24/7 for a few days to a week, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it. ..at least for a good while, then repeat as necessary.


    Signs of onset of lay---I've found the pelvic points to be the most accurate.
    Squatting:
    If you touch their back they will hunker down on the ground, then shake their tail feathers when they get back up.
    This shows they are sexually mature and egg laying is close at hand.

    Combs and Wattles:
    Plump, shiny red - usually means laying.
    Shriveled, dryish looking and pale - usually means not laying.
    Tho I have found that the combs and wattles can look full and red one minute then pale back out the next due to exertion or excitement, can drive ya nuts when waiting for a pullet to lay!

    2 bony points(pelvic bones) on either side of vent:
    Less than 2 fingertip widths apart usually means not laying.
    More than 2 fingertip widths apart usually means laying.
     

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