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General Hen Questions

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Namres, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. Namres

    Namres In the Brooder

    Aug 15, 2011
    Hi to all of you out there.

    I just started off with some Free Range chickens which I use for laying. At the moment I get about 15 eggs a day with roughly 23 hens.

    I have introduced another 20 hens to the flock. At the moment I do not get more eggs though. What could be the reason?

    Furthermore I have a whole lot of broody hens now. When will this stop and when will they start laying again? At the moment they sit on NOTHING all day in the chicken house.

    In a chicken/hen flock what is the percentage of eggs being laid in regard to total hens kept? Lets say I have 100 hens, on average, how many eggs should I get?

    This is it for now. i am sure I have more questions that will follow in this topic.

    Cheers and thanks


  2. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    What breed of hens do you have? Some breeds are excellent layers, laying nearly every day, while others are poor, laying only a few eggs per week.

    Are you feeding them a good layer feed?
  3. lowry075

    lowry075 Songster

    Mar 29, 2011
    Southern California
    Hi, to break the broodies, you can deny them access to the nest boxes during the day. I have found this works for my BO who goes broody often. I have a much smaller flock than yours though, so maybe this isn't practical for you...I don't know. Broodies can lose weight and mine have denied themselves food and water to sit on an empty nest. I have to pick them up and force them out to eat.

    The new hens may need more time to adjust. Yours seems to be a common question after new birds are introduced, and this is what I have read others say.

    I hope this helps. [​IMG]
  4. Namres

    Namres In the Brooder

    Aug 15, 2011
    Thanks for the first answers.

    The hens I have are all mixed. Would not be able to allocate them to a specific breed to be honest.

    Have had the same thought in regard to the broody hen. I will try this out and see what happens.

    At the moment I have 2 hens on the nest, Chicks are currently hatching. Looks like I got 18 chics already [​IMG]

    I feed my hens a mixed ration, but will change to a layer feed as soon as possible. They have been laying constantly for the last weeks since I actually started monitoring how much they lay. But I hopee with the layer feed I might beef it up with 20%. Getting another 10 hens tomorrow.
  5. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Hopefully you are quarantining all new birds prior to adding them to the flock. When chickens are brought into a new environment it may be a matter of weeks before they resume egg laying. One of the quickest ways to break broody hens is to remove them from the general flock area and pen them up where there are no nests. The addition of a non aggressive rooster to this area can also help break the broodiness-- it will not happen over night. The percentage of hens laying on a daily basis is a result of many factors: age, condition, feed quality, time of year/daylength, temperature, etc. It's not all that complicated. You'll get it all figured out. Get a good book on poultry raising and bring all of your questions here. [​IMG]
  6. kera!

    kera! Songster

    Jan 1, 2011
    Navajo County
    [​IMG]I always feed 20% layer because I give my girls treats so this percentage dwindles a bit I only give weeds and grass daily in the summer and layer no treats in the heat, The hens will stop laying from stress and having to adjust to a new pecking order sometimes takes a bit,,,If you are getting lots of chickens for eggs,, you shouold try to get all really good egg layers, sex-links, leghorns RIR etc. not all chickens will be good layers, and broodies give them a chick each to take care of,,
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2011
  7. Namres

    Namres In the Brooder

    Aug 15, 2011
    Well, I gave 2 hens eggs to sit on this morning. The rest of the Broodie hens cannot get to the brood boxes anymore during the day. Lets see what happens in the next few days.

    At the moment I have no problem with the hens sitting on eggs, but not all of them. I need to finish my new enclosures pretty quickly so that I can relocate some of them and once they get broodie, I will move them to sit on some eggs.

  8. Namres

    Namres In the Brooder

    Aug 15, 2011
    So I had 6 Broodie hens which got me crazy! Closed the nesting boxes of during the day, but let them in the house at night. As it seems now, 5 have given up within 2 days. Just one seems to be extremely broodie. One of the nest boxrs is opening up, so I might es well give her a chance to sit.

    Got 16 chicks from 18 eggs in the last 2 days! guess 2 were not fertilized [​IMG]

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