Healthy to allow decrease egg production in winter?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by DianeB, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 12, 2009
    I want to start off with saying that my chickens are pets and their eggs are just a bonus. Their health and longevity is the most important thing to me.

    From what I understand, it is healthier for chickens to slow down or stop laying altogether in the winter. Is this true?

    I don't plan on supplementing light and will allow my hens to go through a full molt in the Fall and Spring.

    Also, only one out of three of their eggs can be used due to taking anti-biotics. The vet said they can't be used until February or March. If it better that they hold off on laying in the Winter, I would rather just let them molt and stop laying until early next year when I can use all their eggs.

    Thank You
    DB
     
  2. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

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    Not all breeds will stop laying in the winter, but if you're not going to supplement light then they'll do what comes naturally. Just go along with it and they'll be fine.
     
  3. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Quote:I agree. I'm a big believer in allowing them to do what comes naturally.
     
  4. vnploveschickens

    vnploveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    I agree with the PP to let nature take its course.

    But I'm curious, why are your chickens taking antibiotics?

    [​IMG]
     
  5. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    One had a bruised vent that caused her to get an infection. So, the vet gave her baytril. The other one had a very,very,very slight, if you put your ear to her chest in a quiet room, breathing problem. He thought it was bronchitis and gave her another strong antibiotic. The one with the bruised vent probably needed an antibiotic (not that strong, though). The other one didn't even seem to have a problem. I stopped giving her the med after the first day and she has had no problems.

    The vet said to wait 6 months. I am not sure if I need to wait that long. It seems that most recommendations are about 6-8 weeks.

    As for letting the do what is natural, you agree that not supplementing light is better? So, having a break from laying eggs is a good thing?

    DB
     
  6. Chickenmaven

    Chickenmaven Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 6, 2009
    Michigan
    Wait six months??? Yikes. Pretty excessive.

    The supplemental light thing gets debated over & over. I would hope that none of us are blasting a bank of 100 watt bulbs for 20 hours a day. I do, however, run a 30 watt bulb from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the winter. My coop has no windows. I live in Michigan. If I didn't give them a teensy lamp, they'd be eating in the dark for 4 months of the year.
     
  7. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, I live in CA and the chickens would have at least 9 hours of light a day in winter. I figure that is more than enough time to eat, drink, dust bathe and do all of their chicky stuff.

    How long should I wait until I eat their eggs? Does anyone have experience with Baytril?

    DB
     
  8. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Quote:I don't have experience with that antibiotic in chickens. You might try using the search feature here on BYC, just type in 'baytril' as your keyword.
     
  9. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have already searched about Baytril. The posts mention dosage and use, not recovering period.

    DB
     
  10. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

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    Baytril has a 2 day meat withdrawal in chickens, but the studies for egg withdrawal haven't been done. Meat withdrawal in cattle is 28 days, so a little longer. I would personally give it a month and then not worry about it, the exception being if you're allergic to any antibiotics in that class.
     

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