Hens not laying

AbagailMae

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 29, 2013
7
0
7
So I did search for this and didn't seem to get any answers! We have approx 14 (Americana and buff) chickens and 7 ducks 3 female and 4 male.(I know a bad ratio) Throughout winter we were getting sometimes 15 eggs a day we do not intentionally have artificially light but I realized our bunny does have a light. Anyway about 1 1/2 months ago we had a fox come and kill about 8 of our birds 2 female ducks and 6 buff's. Ever since then we are pretty much not getting any eggs sometimes we get a 2 or 3 maybe once a week. But usually we don't get any. They are just over a year old.

We do not have a rooster would getting one help in egg production. Or are they still very stressed about the whole fox situation? I just can't figure it out! They are free range so they are usually out and about enjoying themselves. We are positive they are not hiding them.
 

WalkingOnSunshine

Crowing
11 Years
Apr 8, 2008
4,210
516
328
Ohio
I don't know why your hens aren't laying (sorry), but I do know that adding a rooster will not make a difference in the number of eggs you get.
 

AbagailMae

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 29, 2013
7
0
7
Well I guess that is good to know the girls don't need to a rooster around! My mom said a friend of her's chickens lay a lot in fall and winter and slow down in the spring/summer too. Do you know is this abnormal? It seems everything I read says they should be producing more!
 

bj taylor

Songster
8 Years
Oct 28, 2011
1,131
45
168
North Central Texas
I found that chickens are affected by a trauma for a remarkably long time. it took my four pullets about 3 months to largely recuperate when ten of their flock mates were killed by my dog. it wouldn't surprise me at all that they are still impacted by the attack and haven't been able to feel secure again yet.
 

teafreak35

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 9, 2012
15
0
22
We were getting 8 eggs a day just about 4 weeks ago. A skunk got into our pen and killed one of my hens one night. The next couple of days we had no eggs. Now, 4 weeks later, we are still only getting about 4 eggs a day. Trauma must affect them for a while. I'm hoping mine get back to laying soon. I'm trying to make them as happy and keep things as peaceful as possible.

One other note. My hens are all in a large run, but I have ducks that free range. I noticed a couple of days ago that my ducks were hanging around the chicken run a lot. Walking around the outside of it. That day, I only got two eggs.
 

AbagailMae

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 29, 2013
7
0
7
Aren't animals so interesting! Who says they don't have feelings huh!? Well I know the trauma has affected them but they are also molting! And because we bought them all at the same time...they are all molting! Craziness! I am so excited to have found this place though so I can ask questions and not have people think I am crazy!
 

kacy

Hatching
6 Years
May 19, 2013
6
0
7
Port Elgin
I had 2 hens that were laying consistently for a few months now (since I've had them), one hen is now broody and sitting day and night on her eggs and the other hen has stopped laying. Does anyone know why?
 

sherrihf

Hatching
7 Years
Mar 17, 2012
1
0
6
MA
Hi everyone,

I'm hoping I can get some ideas about what may be going on in my coop! I see from the previous posts that having a predator problem can certainly affect productivity and have no doubt that predation caused our problems last year. I can't figure out what the problem is now.

Last year we added 2 batches of chicks to our small flock. None of these chicks ever started laying. We had a very difficult year with predators (you name it, fox, coyote, skunks and probably hawks). By this spring we had lost about 16 hens leaving us with only one poor soul.

Because we didn't want her to be alone, a friend gave us 10 of their chickens (including one rooster). We don't know how old these chickens are, but our friend estimates 1-2 years old. They were laying before we got them. After a day or two of settling in, we began to get couple of eggs per day. About a week later, another friend who was moving asked us to take her 10 chickens...all 1 year old hens that were good layers before we got them. Again, after a day or two of settling in they too began to lay a few eggs a day. And then they all stopped. We are only getting one or two eggs per day and some days we are getting none.

We have cleaned the coop top to bottom, put dusting powder under the shavings in case they have mites, removed an old locker that we stored food and straw in just in case there were rodents, cleaned out the garage that the coop is attached to and put out mouse repellent. (we did find numerous mouse nests in the garage) We added two large sections of electric poultry netting so that the girls can have safe access to grass, sunshine and dusting areas. Trapped and eliminated a few skunks. There have been no losses to predators since the new girls arrived. We are stumped.

I think we should be getting at least a dozen eggs per day out of 19 hens and we have 8 pullets that have just moved into a segregated area of the coop. We feed regular Blue Seal Layer Pellets and have always had plenty of success with this feed in the past. (We want to switch to an organic feed, but at twice the cost, don't want to do that unless we're getting a consistent number of eggs).

Any ideas or help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much!

Sherri
 
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AbagailMae

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 29, 2013
7
0
7
Kacy,
It is possible the other hen is stealing eggs! Or a snake could be eating them or...sometimes Hens only lay every other day!
 

AbagailMae

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 29, 2013
7
0
7
Sherri,
Are your hens molting? Hens aren't supposed to molt until they are 2 or so and ours molted at 1 year! Also they could just be stressed out because of all the stress adding new birds etc...Could an animal be stalking around outside the coop at night? That can stress them out too. What type of hens are they some are better layers than others? After about a year production is supposed to start slowing down too...So many different things that could be going wrong just give them some time though and see if they pick up! Best wishes Abagail
 

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