Help with a "non-layer"??

mtessdoan

In the Brooder
Jun 29, 2016
18
0
29
Southern California
700

700

700

Our girls were rescues so I don't know breed :( conditions were rough for them and feed was definitely subpar for the majority of their little lives... Best guess is around 6/7 mo old?!

Now on layer feed with oyster shell in coop, have a big run plus free range daily. Plenty of scraps & mealworm treats + egg shells.

Two girls have nice big red combs but one is still small and pale. She seems to be the leader of the pecking order and I'm not seeing any signs of worms in the poop. Plenty of DE to keep ticks/mites out plus dust for their baths.

I've never seen her in a nesting box and she doesn't squat when we come near. She still runs like crazy...

Basically, is something wrong? Will she eventually mature and lay? Was her pullet/chick stage too rough??
 
Last edited:

TheKindaFarmGal

Free Ranging
5 Years
May 4, 2016
5,691
9,322
587
Somewhere in the Universe
Possibly an RIR mix. Are her legs dirty or naturally part black? And she will probably lay soon, I wouldn't worry about it. Some pullets take up to ten months to start laying, while others begin at four. A lot depends on the individual.
smile.png
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,005
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
Looks like a pea comb. If so, could be an EE. Can you show a close up of her comb? Are her legs short, or is that camera angle? If her legs are short, she may have some dorking in her back ground. Pretty girl.
 

mtessdoan

In the Brooder
Jun 29, 2016
18
0
29
Southern California
Sorry :( very new to chickens so still trying to learn the abbreviations... Her legs aren't particularly shorter than her two friends but her "thigh feathers" (??) go lower and are bushier.

Her legs seem to have a permanent blackish tinge to them. I thought dirt in the beginning but it doesn't rub off.

Not sure what "EE" is? RIR = Rhode Island Red?? And dorking?? Forgive me, but I had to chuckle... :)

Mainly I was told combs can show signs of anemia or disease and was wondering if that was the case with this girl.

Thanks for the help!!!
 

junebuggena

Crowing
Apr 17, 2015
23,102
8,204
491
Long Beach, WA
Looks like a Rhode Island Red to me. As for not laying yet, layer feed is specifically for actively laying birds only, so only feed if all birds in the flock are laying. And it should be the majority of the diet, with treats not exceeding 10%. If you would like to continue feeding treats, switch to a grower, non-medicated starter, all flock, or flock raiser type feed. The higher protein content in those types of feeds will help offset any low protein treats.
 

mtessdoan

In the Brooder
Jun 29, 2016
18
0
29
Southern California
Do Rhode Island reds typically start laying later? Are scraps considered part of the treats category? By treats I mean egg shells, scraps of kale stems, the occasional cucumber peel, watermelon hunk when it's hot, etc. We have meal worms that they get when we want them to follow us somewhere in the yard but not daily.

How would I ensure only the laying hens eat the layer feed and the darker one eats the grower feed only? Do I separate them? Doesn't that change the pecking order?

Who knew chickens were so involved?!
 

junebuggena

Crowing
Apr 17, 2015
23,102
8,204
491
Long Beach, WA
Yes, scraps count as treats. Eggshells are a calcium source, and not considered treats. Laying hens do not require layer feed to produce eggs. In fact, most hens actually produce better if fed a higher protein feed. The only types of chicken feed that is not appropriate for all ages are layer and medicated starter. All other types of feed can be fed, long term, to all ages and genders. The only thing that actively laying birds need, in addition to their feed, is a source of calcium.
 

donrae

Hopelessly Addicted
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Jun 18, 2010
31,453
4,057
581
Southern Oregon
welcome-byc.gif


She just doesn't look mature enough to lay IMO.

She may be younger, she may be a bit stunted. No way to tell, really. All you can do is move forward....

Since feed was lacking when younger, I'd nix the layer feed for now. It's actually the lower protein feed you can get. I'd feed everyone a starter or grower. Lots of us who have multi-age or gender flocks never feed layer, just grower or all-flock, something like that. Scatter the oyster shell in the run (if the other girls are laying. If not, nix that too) and let everyone eat the same.

I feed all my food scraps to the birds. I don't especially worry about how much they get---some days is nothing, some days (clean out the fridge, canning, etc) they get an abundance. It's more of an over time kind of thing.....not so much a regulated day by day issue.

With her being so much smaller, and the comb looking mixed, I'm wondering if she's part bantam something. Any way, she's a cute little thing and looks healthy now, nice smooth feathers, bright eyes, etc. I'd say just give her time and see how things go.
 

MANNA-PRO

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom