Help I have Free Loading Chickens

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by CAMOCLUCKS, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. CAMOCLUCKS

    CAMOCLUCKS Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    32
    Aug 28, 2008
    St. Elmo, Illinois
    We live in Central Illinois and of course it has gotten cold and the days are shorter, but we have 30 hens and we are only getting one egg yes i said one egg for the last 3-4 weeks. They use to be free range but we have a coyote and hawk problem so we built them a pen 3 1/2 months ago so originally we thought it was from them just plain mad about the change in routine, then it got shorter days so we added light to make the day longer. And they are still free loaders not worthy of the feed that they are eating. Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated from all.
     
  2. TDB

    TDB Out Of The Brooder

    82
    0
    29
    Sep 20, 2009
    You could put a light on them, that should help with egg production. Hens need 14 hours of daylight to lay an egg
     
  3. GwenDellAnno

    GwenDellAnno Chillin' With My Peeps

    231
    0
    99
    Jul 18, 2009
    Water Valley, AB
    OK: I was reading on another thread (can't find it at the moment) that chickens in their second winter can stop laying completely for a couple of months. Eiyee!! Are these chickens in their second winter (or beyond??) Perhaps that is the problem. In their first winter they have basically just started laying and so presumably have more energy stored up??? Any expert opinions on this???
     
  4. stephhassler

    stephhassler Chillin' With My Peeps

    152
    1
    121
    Jan 30, 2009
    Eastern Iowa
    Age and breed of chickens might help.
     
  5. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    16,271
    778
    406
    Nov 18, 2007
    Florida
    My Coop
    They may be just taking a break.
     
  6. Fancie

    Fancie Chillin' With My Peeps

    795
    0
    151
    Oct 31, 2008
    Illinois
    same here... the moment I said... this will be the last carton of eggs I will ever need to buy... they all went on strike.
     
  7. wxdude99

    wxdude99 Chillin' With My Peeps

    130
    0
    119
    Sep 26, 2008
    Montgomery Area
    I'm at 2 months without an egg too. I only have three chickens - one austrolorp, one brown leghorn, and one golden campine. Two of them molted starting two months ago, but they've gotten their feathers back fully. I put a couple of store bought eggs in their nest box yesterday to hopefully remind them of why I have them. I'm going to run a light out to the coop this weekend if I don't get anything by then.
     
  8. Osage Rooster

    Osage Rooster New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Nov 24, 2009
    Osage County, MO
    I have all kinds of breeds. About 20 hens all together. I went from averaging a dozen a day to 1 - almost overnight. I know I need to get my light and timer set back up but I've been busy and I don't mind giving their body a break. For some reason, they are picking up the pace again.
     
  9. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    39,821
    1,299
    516
    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    I have a couple that are molting. (at 9 months old) I don't consider mine freeloaders though. Their bodies need the break, and I'm fine with it. I'm getting some eggs, just not a lot.

    Now my freeloaders............. those would be my 7 week old welsummer and BR chicks.[​IMG]
     
  10. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    39,821
    1,299
    516
    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    The good news is, we're almost to the shortest day of the year. So the days will soon be getting longer. [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by