Help, no eggs since August 2018

rhodyray

Songster
6 Years
Jul 19, 2014
33
28
104
Exeter, Rhode Island
My hens went into molt in August and were finished months ago yet I still haven't seen an egg and it is December 6, 2018. The hens were purchased as chicks in the spring of 2016 so they are not old by any means. They are very healthy. Spend most of the day unless it is to eat or drink in the coop and not the run which is enclosed and roofed. I'm at a loss and am thinking of giving them to someone who will make soup with them. I can't see providing excellent care of them if I receive nothing in return. Your feedback is appreciated and I really would rather have them lay eggs than make soup with them. Thanks
 

BELLAPURPLEWOW

Chirping
May 12, 2018
80
75
81
Hi!! I can't answer your question but I have a question for you lol. I can't figure out how to post my own thing! Can you help! I only know about quail not chickens sorry!
 

rhodyray

Songster
6 Years
Jul 19, 2014
33
28
104
Exeter, Rhode Island
Also make sure nothing is stealing eggs and the hens aren’t eating them..you could try putting a fake egg in the nest as encouragement, I’ve found that helps

Nothing may get into the coop because it opens into a secure run and there are no signs of egg shells or egg substance residue anywhere in the coop or nest boxes. Thanks for your feedback. Not broody either.
 

urbanutah

Chirping
Jul 17, 2016
77
46
71
Taylorsville, UT
My Coop
My Coop
My hens went into molt in August and were finished months ago yet I still haven't seen an egg and it is December 6, 2018. The hens were purchased as chicks in the spring of 2016 so they are not old by any means. They are very healthy. Spend most of the day unless it is to eat or drink in the coop and not the run which is enclosed and roofed. I'm at a loss and am thinking of giving them to someone who will make soup with them. I can't see providing excellent care of them if I receive nothing in return. Your feedback is appreciated and I really would rather have them lay eggs than make soup with them. Thanks
I have a small urban flock of 6 hens ranging in age from less than a year to about 5 years old and they all do the same thing. Most of my flock doesn't start their molt until late Sept or Oct, but I've certainly had one or two start their molt at the end of summer and I had one start in January one year (poor thing, she was naked and it was freezing cold). With the exception of the two who are 2 years old or younger, none lay eggs beyond late October when the days get quite short and cold. I live in Utah so it's cold and the days are pretty short this time of year. One of my young girls, who molted in September, just started sporadically laying again, but the remaining five haven't laid in quite a while and my two-year-old Wyandotte went into molt in August this year and hasn't laid since either. I'm not sure if it's breed specific, but in my limited experience there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason as my hens don't typically molt at the same time. Some chicken-keepers add artificial daylight to their coop for a few hours in the evening to encourage year-round egg-laying, but I figure if mother-nature had intended for them to lay year-round they would so I just let nature take its course and buy eggs during their off-season. It does stink not having eggs in the fall/winter as that's when I do most of my baking. My girls generally start laying again around February and produce well through early fall, but there are certainly exceptions. If your girls did an early molt, it may be that by the time their feathers had completely grown back the days were too short. In general, they need around 12 hours of daylight to lay. I hope this helps. :) Also, make sure they are getting proper balanced nutrition as that can also impact laying.
 

bobbi-j

Enabler
11 Years
Mar 15, 2010
15,696
32,253
1,092
On the MN prairie.
My hens went into molt in August and were finished months ago yet I still haven't seen an egg and it is December 6, 2018. The hens were purchased as chicks in the spring of 2016 so they are not old by any means. They are very healthy. Spend most of the day unless it is to eat or drink in the coop and not the run which is enclosed and roofed. I'm at a loss and am thinking of giving them to someone who will make soup with them. I can't see providing excellent care of them if I receive nothing in return. Your feedback is appreciated and I really would rather have them lay eggs than make soup with them. Thanks
They are getting old in chicken years. Especially if they are bred to be high production layers. If you are in the northern hemisphere, it's winter and the days are short. They need a certain amount of light per day (general consensus is about 14 hours) to produce eggs. Adding light to their coop may help with that. Otherwise, they will likely start again once the days start getting longer.

To be honest, I don't think it's all bad to turn them into soup at this stage. As laying hens age (for some breeds, 3 years is a long stretch), they are more prone to develop reproductive tract problems and can end up dying a painful death if left for nature to take its course. If you want a steady supply of eggs, a multigenerational flock is a good idea. Get pullets every year, and as they begin to lay, cull the oldest of the birds.
 

MANNA-PRO

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