help too many infomation with different answerss


9 Years
May 25, 2010
This is my first time raising chickens. When I first got them at May, I researched what to do in the winter concerning eggs. Everywhere I looked it said hens need 15-18 hrs of sun light to lay eggs (not enough in the winter). Now I see some posts that say they will lay through winter. Which one is correct? I want to know because my pullets are 5 months old and if they need the calcium I would want to provide that. I have heard that i can really hunt my pullets if they want to lay eggs and i don't provide the calcium. they are still on chick starter right now? Should i give them layer feed? I live in west tennessee
some lay thru the winter and others just slow down, just depends on the chicken, I start to mix the layer with the starter at 6 months but that does not mean that they will start to lay some breeds mature later than others, my orps started to lay at 6 months, but not all of them, my Naked necks are really good layers, they don't stop during the winter, but they started to lay at almost at 8 months old. I'll just say patience.
You can safely wait until your girls start laying to change to layer feed. You could even just put out some oyster shell in a separate container, and they will take as much as they need.

Lots of people have different methods of feeding layers. There might not be one exact right method. Do what works for you and provide what they need. I don't provide any extra calcium for my girls since they free range, and they are very healthy, as are their eggs. Everyone's situation is different, but they will lay their first eggs without the layer feed, and it won't hurt them a bit. Then transition to whatever you want them to have when they're laying. No problem.
I was going to say that too
but I agree
You won't hurt them by not providing calcium but the first eggs may be soft shelled. I give mine flock-raiser from about 12 weeks until they start to lay. Then I switch them to layer feed. I keep oyster shell out though for the older birds til the younger ones catch up (I always add to the flock in early spring). The older gals will eat enough oyster shell to keep them healthy as long as the feeder is kept clean and full. Good Luck!
I agree. All birds, even birds of the same breed are different. There will be many birds and many different experiences from many people. If you throw a topic up on the board, you will get many answers. We all mean well, and you and I benefit from a million years of combined experience of folks reading these threads. ( Except for the time I told the Newbie that TSC carried a tiny bit and harness to tame quail, lol). Free advice is worth what you pay for it. That being said, what I often do is not start a thread, but search for one in progress or from awhile back relevant to the information I want. That seems to get me a lot of information. Peace.
Some will lay through the winter. Some won't. Varies from breed to breed and even varies from bird to bird within the breed. If they start laying, provide laying feed. If you provide supplemental light, provide laying feed. If they happen to lay an egg or two prior to laying feed, they will not die. They are a lot tougher than many give them credit for.

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