EXPERT ADVICE NEEDED regarding barley grain for chickens

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by LovesAGoodYolk, Mar 25, 2017.

  1. LovesAGoodYolk

    LovesAGoodYolk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have been trying for quite some time, to determine WHY my hens aren't laying as they should be. I get very few eggs out of 12 month old RIR
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Many things will affect egg production. Things like quality and nutritional value of what feed you are feeding, whether fresh clean water is always available, what temperature it is, both hot and cold extremes will affect it, age of the hen, how long she has been laying, and any and all external stressors, other birds or predators, as well as the overall health of the bird.

    So as you can see a bit more information about your hen would help. Most hens lay well the first season, than production decreases from there. Most will quit during parts of the year to take a break before resuming again.

    Are you feeding only barley grain? Is that your question? Or are you asking about adding it to the diet?
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    More info in duplicate thread here:
    BUT..we still need more info on what and how exactly you are feeding.

     
  4. LovesAGoodYolk

    LovesAGoodYolk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chickens are fed: pellets, tiny bit of scratch, FODDER sprouted with BARLEY, wheat and black oil sunflower seeds, sunflower hearts, oyster shell, mealworms, random veggies from the grocery store but no potatoes, and occasionally I will throw them a handful of dry cat food which they think is a delicacy.
     
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I would try feed a good ration that is higher in protein and cut out some of the extra stuff. Since eggs are mostly protein chickens need a good amount daily to produce an egg. 16% is bare minimum. You didn't mention the pellet type, but if it's a layer it might cause trouble when combined with lots of lower protein extras.

    I had fed barley to my birds for the good part of a whole winter as part of their scratch mix. My husband works for the railroad and there was a spill on the tracks. He brought a good amount home and the birds loved it. I didn't see any negative effects from feeding it.

    I would think that your particular birds aren't great layers. I have some show quality RIR that probably laid about 25 eggs a year. Now they lay none at 7 years.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    What kind of pellets...brand, type, and protein and calcium percentages????

    You're feeding a lot of different things....hard to say if the combo or one item may be causing problems, or not.
    I doubt it's the barley.

    Did any of your birds molt this past fall/winter?
    The temperature has much less to do with laying than the length of days.
     
  7. LovesAGoodYolk

    LovesAGoodYolk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I LOVE IT when something goes right for me. It happens so infrequently. I would just like to verify that the barley was definitely the problem. Shy of 2 weeks after I stopped the barley, I HAVE LOTS OF EGGS. No other changes were made, and the weather didn't change either.
     
  8. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    However, day length has changed. And the increasing day length, may have turned the tide. That being said, while barley fodder is a good thing, it brings your overall protein rate down.
     
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