feed during molt?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Tad, Sep 22, 2009.

  1. Tad

    Tad Chillin' With My Peeps

    274
    3
    131
    Jul 16, 2008
    South TX on the border
    is there anything I can do to speed up or increase egg production during molt....feed wise?
     
  2. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    25,559
    65
    411
    Sep 25, 2007
    Michigan
    Not really; part of the reason they molt is that they need a break from laying. It's really hard on their bodies, and takes most of their energy growing new feathers in, with not much left for laying.

    That being said, you CAN add extra protein to help them along in the process of molting; I do this by throwing in a few handfulls of dry cat food every other day during molt. It's the only time I use dry cat food, as too much protein isn't good for them, but it does help them during molt.
     
  3. Chickn chick 46

    Chickn chick 46 Chillin' With My Peeps

    343
    0
    119
    May 22, 2009
    I try to give them a bit more protein and calcuim by giving yogurt or cooked eggs as treats. I gave them a chopped up boiled egg and they went piranha on me. I had to run, fast!! Scrambled eggs get the same reaction.

    Theres been alot of discussion on this lately, good info.
     
  4. Tad

    Tad Chillin' With My Peeps

    274
    3
    131
    Jul 16, 2008
    South TX on the border
    I am down to 4 eggs out of 18 a day, its a little disturbing, they get free range grass and free choice layer, I will mix a little turkey starter in in the morning with the layer feed, and go from there
     
  5. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    14,108
    20
    311
    Mar 25, 2008
    Virginia
    Unfortunately, a molt is something you need to plan for every year. This is something that just can't be avoided, disturbing or not. It's just the way their bodies work.
     
  6. Chickn chick 46

    Chickn chick 46 Chillin' With My Peeps

    343
    0
    119
    May 22, 2009
    Quote:Exactly, they need a bit of a rest. Egg laying is hard on their systems. They will gear up again, patience during molt is hard and frustrating, but necessary, IMO [​IMG]
     
  7. peacedove

    peacedove Out Of The Brooder

    44
    0
    23
    May 24, 2008
    Dexter, Oregon
    I have 23 1 1/2 year old hens and I am getting 2 eggs a day [​IMG] Next year I will be sure to hatch some chicks just to carry me over this time of year. My friends six '09 spring girls are laying like crazy.
     
  8. wombat

    wombat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2009
    The yogurt and scrabled egg suggestions are good. We also feed small amounts of canned cat food (none with chicken in them!).

    You should also allow the number of hours of light to decrease naturally, and let them rest.

    Commercial molt cycles run about 10 weeks before the flock returns to 50% production.

    If you add some new layers each year, you'll have young pullets laying through the molt cycle of your older hens.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by