Holding a layer - does that affect production?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by henryclay1991, Dec 25, 2008.

  1. henryclay1991

    henryclay1991 New Egg

    Dec 19, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    Just wondering, in general, if a hen is caught and held (typically hand-fed a treat and petted), will that negatively affect egg laying?

    We've got a bunch of 5-week-olds and were discussing them with some of our relatives who grew up on the farm at Christmas Eve dinner. They said that once hens started laying, it's best to leave them be or they can quit laying. Could it be that farm chickens aren't as tame and used to interaction with people as backyard chickens?

    I know we've got a long time before they start laying, but if we need to leave them be once they grow up, we'll need to start mentally preparing ourselves now.

  2. Laskaland

    Laskaland ThE gRoOvY cHiCkEn

    Aug 2, 2008
    Quote:First:: [​IMG]

    Happy chickens lay high quality (and quantity) eggs. If they like being held and loved on- go for it!!! It's a biological thing. If their needs are being met, they will lay eggs. They will let you know if they like being held or not...
  3. Chick_a_dee

    Chick_a_dee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2008
    Peterborough, ON
    I don't think it affects them. I've picked mine up, held them, put vaseline on their combs, and I'm getting 9 eggs a day right now out of 15 chickens and they just started laying beginning of last week.
  4. danischi24

    danischi24 Loves naked pets

    Aug 17, 2008
    The only thing that may affect egg production with regards to handling is extreme stress. If they are constantly being harassed by kids grabbing & chasing them or stressed out some other way, their egg production may drop. If they are happy, they will lay. Farm chickens often aren't handled & if they get manhandled all of a sudden, it may cause stress.
  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Quote:Yep, that's what I was going to say. I don't handle any of the girls who get stressed out from contact. Such as the leghorns and productio birds. However, I won't hesitate to snatch up any of the silly "lap" birds who could care less that they are all the sudden 4 feet in the air.
  6. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    We heard lots of things like this as kids growing up on a farm.

    But, I agree - stress.

    Merry Christmas Everyone!
  7. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mine are used to being picked up so when I must, and I'm gentle, they cooperate and a few enjoy the attention. I would think it's like anything else having to do with animals- of gentled and handled carefully you're in a good place with them. I'm getting 11-12 eggs a day from 12, so it must not be a factor with mine.[​IMG]
  8. Rhett&SarahsMom

    Rhett&SarahsMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 8, 2008
    goodness I hope not or Audrey will never lay!

    She comes running up to the fence the minute she hears us. I open the coop door in the morning and she is at my feet hopping up and down til I pick her silly self up and give her some love.

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