From 12 eggs a day to 0?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Lelilamom, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. Lelilamom

    Lelilamom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have 20 layers and have been getting 12 eggs reliably every day, even in this cold upstate NY weather. We were stunned today when we went out to the coop and there were no eggs. We have 10 Red Sex, 5 Amber White, 2 Buffs, 2 Barred Rocks and 1 RIR.

    There have been no changes in diet or run/coop. We have a predator problem so they have been kept in the coop with adjacent run. They do appear bored and have been pecking eachother - so there are several with bloody wings. We treat the spots with Blu-Kote to avoid further injury. A few hens started molting earlier this winter, but not all of them and they are all done by now except one.

    We find it hard to believe that we could go from 12 to 0 in one day. The coop/run is not visible from the road so only our neighbors/friends know it's there - so if this is a theft, someone would have had to go out of their way to walk around our property to access the coop/run tucked behind a hill on the other side of our house.

    If this is due to cold weather, wouldn't they have gradually slowed down weeks ago when we had weather below freezing, even below zero? There are no signs of predators getting into the coop at this time.

    Baffled!
     
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Will be interesting to see what you get tomorrow. Could be coincidence and just everybody decided to take a day off today, I've had occasional days where egg #s really dropped. Or, like you said somebody or something got in the coop and got the eggs, wouldn't be the first time it was humans. The girls appeared to be acting normally today, eating, drinking etc? If it continues, might try a game camera etc.
     
  3. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    To go from that many eggs to 0 overnight is very suspicious. I'd put my money on a thief of the animal variety. Mice and other small animals can and will steal eggs and you'd be amazed how many eggs the little pests can cart off!
     
  4. SlipsWife

    SlipsWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could they have ate the eggs themselves? I've read that if you have an egg eater, others will follow and they eat everything. I watched an egg eating frenzy one time when we went to buy goats. The eggs had been there earlier in the day and we went back about 4 hours later and they were still there. One of the hens jumped up and started pecking at them, then the rest of the hens and rooster started fighting over the eggs and then they were gone...
     
  5. Sierrab

    Sierrab Out Of The Brooder

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    We have a similar thing going on, our 13 layers have gone from 10 to 3 to nothing within a week. Then we go back the average of 8 or 9 a day.
    We are outside of Portland Or and the weather has been up and down. Does weather affect egg production so drastically?
     
  6. subhanalah

    subhanalah Overrun With Chickens

    If you have been having predator scares, it could be stressing your girls out into not laying as well.
     
  7. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Weather does influence egg production. Especially extreme weather conditions, like very hot or cold spells.
     
  8. subhanalah

    subhanalah Overrun With Chickens

    The weather makes sense. Here in the middle of the country we are having a serious winter storm. Everything is covered in ice and there is thunder and lightning!
     
  9. Sierrab

    Sierrab Out Of The Brooder

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    The weirdest part is we had the best egg production during the deep freeze in December. Now that it's starting to warm up and is 50 one day then 35 the next the production has drastic changes.
    Thank you for the help.
     
  10. Lelilamom

    Lelilamom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think our mystery is solved my friends. A combination of the cold weather and protein hungry chickens. DH went out yesterday and cleaned the coop and found three eggs buried in the straw. He found another 5 egg shells crushed and the remains of the eggs struck to the straw. Today he went out and one or two eggs, but plenty of crushed shells. Production is certainly down due to the cold, but the chickens are eating the remaining eggs.

    I'm not disappointed by this. Just relieved it's not a thief.
     

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