Hens not laying, why?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Ecoria, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. Ecoria

    Ecoria Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
    Glen Allen, VA
    I bought 7 sex link hens at a chicken swap on 8/18. Gave 3 to a friend (I keep my chickens at her place). Supposedly, at the time I purchased them, they were all laying, or so I was told. I figured it would take a couple of weeks for them to adjust to a new place and they would begin laying (again?). The middle of September one of the hens (the biggest and leader of the flock) began laying, my boys saw her. Shortly after my leghorn pullet started laying (but I knew she wasn't laying yet when I got her and is the only white egg layer). But that's it. None of my other hens are laying. The end of September 2 of the 3 hens i gave my friend started laying, and were laying double yolkers at least a couple of times a week.

    My friend has 4 hens and a roo in a small triangle tractor where they stay all day. I have 6 hens and a roo who free range for, on average, a minimum of 5 hours a day, usually at least 4 days a week. The rest of the time they are in their tractor, which is a 4x8x22" high run with a 4x4x3.5 coop on top. They get unlimited supply of layer feed, scratch, oyster shell and tons of food scraps. They are all friendly and, once caught, will totally chill out in my 4 and 6yo boys laps. I also got a not quite laying EE who is still not laying. Now the sex-links are molting so i know they aren't laying now, but is there some way to tell the age on them so I can figure out if they are younger/older than i was told?
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2012
  2. Ecoria

    Ecoria Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
    Glen Allen, VA
    nobody has any advise or insights?
     
  3. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    It is strange that your hens are not laying and your friend's are. That rules out shorter days (light hours), which is slowing down egg production this time of the year.
    You can tell how long a hen has been laying and more or less how many eggs by looking at her beak, eyes, feet etc. I actually found a link to an article about this here earlier today that another member posted:

    http://www.ca.uky.edu/smallflocks/Factsheets/Evaluating_egg_laying_hens.pdf

    When they free range, do they go out in the afternoons or in the mornings? Most of my hens lay in the first half of the day, so if your go out in the morning they might be hiding eggs somewhere.
     
  4. new2chicks65802

    new2chicks65802 New Egg

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    Oct 17, 2012
    I bought 8 RIR's about 2 weeks ago. They were moulting and only had a few feather's at the time. Well now they have most if not all of their feather's back and out of the 8 only 1 is laying. Why??? Someone please help

    Ok update, after reading the article I looked at the body parts on my chicks and the shanks look pale to me, I can't see the vent's, the beaks are not yellow, so I can't tell there, and the eye ring is pale on some of them and some of a little pink around them. ear lobes are pink/red with white.
    I don't have any additional lighting for early in the morning or after the sun starts to set, could that be my problem that they are not getting the recommended 12-14 hours of daylight? Someone please help.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2012
  5. Druidess

    Druidess Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 11, 2012
    Thank you for this, New2chicks. I was looking for answers as to what's normal for the molting season regarding feather loss and also egg laying. Since our girls were too young to really molt at this time last year, this is my first time going through this, and it's been startling to see one of my girls lose a ton of feathers in my hands and have an almost naked back and wing "shoulders".

    I take it they can lose almost all of their feathers at this time, and that it's also why we're only getting one egg every few days out of our older girls? (The babies are too young, just getting feathered.)
     
  6. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Here's a good article explaining the jolting process, what to expect, the different molts etc: http://www.daff.qld.gov.au/27_2709.htm
     
  7. new2chicks65802

    new2chicks65802 New Egg

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    Oct 17, 2012
    Thank yo for the link. I have read that article before and from what I can tell, it's none of those issues, other than the moulting. I have had them for 2 weeks now and when I got them they were pretty bare, but now they have almost all of their feathers back. So IDK.
     
  8. Ecoria

    Ecoria Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
    Glen Allen, VA
    Duplicate post. Can't figure out how to delete.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2012
  9. Ecoria

    Ecoria Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
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    thank you. That article is very helpful. I'll have to examine them tomorrow. They usually get to free range on the afternoons and evening so have laid by the time I get over there.
     
  10. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It can take sometimes more than six weeks to get over a move. Then there is the light issue. And just because they have their feathers doesn't mean they are finished molt, takes time to recover. You are facing multiple issues.
     

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