Help please. Opened pasture, no egg laying now!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mcd311, Oct 24, 2013.

  1. mcd311

    mcd311 Out Of The Brooder

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    So I thought I was doing my girls a favor fencing in the pasture for the goats and letting the chickens free range inside the pasture, but since I did I have not gotten a single egg out of them!
    I figured okay they are laying somewhere out in the pasture but the kids and I went on an egg hunt and couldn't find a single egg!

    What else could be going on with them?
    They have been in the pasture now for 3 weeks. They have access to fresh water and I feed laying pellets.
    There are 23 layers and one female duck that was laying, I can't find where she is laying now either.

    I'm guessing I'll have to fence a run back onto the coop to see if they'll go back to laying or not.
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    They might have stopped laying because daylight hours (at least in the United States--I'm not sure where you are) are decreasing. Chickens need at least fourteen hours of light to lay well. It might just be a coincdedence that they stopped laying when you let them out to pasture.

    Its possible that they are laying eggs somewhere else, but your aren't finding them because they are being eaten. Snakes and other wild animals will eat eggs.They may be getting to the eggs before you do.

    Has anything stressful ocurred lately, like a predator attack? Stress can cause chickens to stop laying. Have you changed the feed lately? What feed are they getting?
     
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  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Keep them in the coop or contained in a run, attached to the coop, for a few days. If they lay a good amount? you'll know.
     
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  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    So they can't get into the coop from the pasture?
     
  5. mcd311

    mcd311 Out Of The Brooder

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    They have full access to the coop from the pasture. There water and lay pellets are actually in the coop so they come back to drink and snack.
     
  6. mcd311

    mcd311 Out Of The Brooder

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    The thought of daylight did cross my mind (I usually put a light in the coop come winter to make up for it) we are in Central Louisiana.

    Besides taking the run fence down there hasn't been any stress in the last 3 weeks, grass and bugs would be new feed to them they haven't had access to before, just dirt and laying pellets.


     
  7. mcd311

    mcd311 Out Of The Brooder

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    I

    I had a fenced in run INSIDE a fenced in goat pasture. We put new welded wire fence up for the goats and I thought the chickens would enjoy the full access to grass and bugs (producing gealthier eggs) LOL. Joke was on me...they went on strike instead :)

    This weekends project will be to put the run fence back up (smaller dirt grounds) and see if we get the eggs going again...if not ill add a light for two more hours a night of light and see if that changes anything.

    I'll report back.
    Thanks a bunch!
     
  8. boomchicken

    boomchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could the goats be eating the eggs?
     
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I like to add my light early in the morning so they can have a natural sunset to go to roost....plus it looks nice to get up in the dark (I get up early) and see the lighted coop outside.
     
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  10. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    they didn't stop laying because they have access to the pasture. It's either coincidence with the shorter days (how old are your birds?) or they're hiding them and you just haven't been able to find them. Easiest thing to do is just confine them again for a few days and see if you get eggs.
     

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