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Greetings from Ireland

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by LoTwan, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. LoTwan

    LoTwan Hatching

    Oct 9, 2011
    I have been keeping chickens for about 18 months now. I started out with 14 Bovan Goldlines (RIR/Light Sussex cross) in a residential back garden. They were delightful layers. All the way through last Winter which 6" of snow on the ground I was getting 10 -12 eggs a day.

    Skip forward to April of this year and I moved them to our new 5 acre small holding. They were free to roam over the whole 5 acres and while they initially laid in the coop they eventually started laying hither, tither and yon which is cute as all that but not good when you consider I was getting maybe 4 eggs a day from 12 birds. I decided to pen them in which was a straight forward enough process and they accepted it reasonably well (after I had clipped their wings) but didn't get back to laying well at all.

    5 weeks ago I bought some new girls to get me up to 16 (the limit of my coop). The next morning something (fox/mink/pine martin) got into the coop and left me with 6 of my original girls and 1 of the new Isa Browns. The following morning the Isa Brown went missing. A few days later one of the original BG's escaped and was caught.

    3 weeks ago today I went to a poultry fair to find a local breeder and was offered 9 RIR/RIR crosses that a local guy didn't want to take home. They were scrawny and their wings had been BUTCHERED! I knew by their combs that they were about the same age as my own girls (18 months ish). I took them and as we left I was offered another 3 by another guy who didn't want to take them home. It was clear that they had fought for space and food but they have settled in and they are no longer fighting with each other or my original girls.

    In the last 3 weeks 2 have died of "no longer being alive" and one escaped and I think went the way of the fox. The new, rescued, girls are all looking lovely and shiny and have really plumped out (I am impressed with the amount of weight some of them have put on). I know their feathers won't come back until they go through another molt which could be a year away but I am not overly bothered by that.

    My problem is... I got 1 egg today! I got 2 yesterday! From 14 birds! They are very expensive eggs!

    They are all eating layers pellets, have grass and grubs and grit to peck at. They get a few bananas/apples thrown in to them in the afternoon and have plenty of water.

    My 5 original girls are all in molt (a gentle enough one but a molt none the less and there are feathers EVERYWHERE) I know they need to be treated for lice/mites but does anyone have any idea how long "rescued" chickens take to get back to full health & egg production?

    Many thanks,


  2. SilkieBantams

    SilkieBantams Songster

    Sep 23, 2011
    Houston, TX
    [​IMG] from Texas
  3. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Feb 20, 2008
    Opelousas, Louisiana
  4. Hi Laura! [​IMG] from Washington State glad you joined us [​IMG] [​IMG]
  5. RedRoosterFarm

    RedRoosterFarm **LOVE MY SERAMAS**

    Mar 25, 2010
    Eatonville, Washington
    Glad to have you. You will love it here. So much info.
  6. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Welcome to BYC. Lice/mites will prevent them from laying. Shortness of daylight hours and molt will cause them to slow or stop laying. Introducing new birds upsets the pecking order and will cause them to stop laying. They'll start laying again when stressors have subsided or gone away.
  7. TigerLilly

    TigerLilly I failed Chicken Math

    Jul 18, 2010
    Central Florida
    And Dawg's right. Disease & stress are big factors in whether or not they lay. I had one that got attacked (dont know by what) about 6 months ago; nursed her back to health & she has not laid an egg since. Sad to say she's being sent to freezer camp soon...

  8. weimarmama

    weimarmama Crowing

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us. Great advice given [​IMG]
  9. hcppam

    hcppam Songster

    [​IMG] Hello, from the Big Bear mountains of Ca. Glad you found us. [​IMG] [​IMG]
  10. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer Premium Member

    May 11, 2010

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