How can I get them laying eggs again?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by sheeshshe, Dec 24, 2010.

  1. sheeshshe

    sheeshshe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 6, 2009
    We haven't gotten eggs in a month and a half perhaps 2. They were molting something fierce but they have stopped I think. It looks like about all their feathers are back in. they are not laying any eggs still and my DH wants to get rid of them bc they're not giving eggs [​IMG] that will NOT happen. but now its winter and cold and the days are short and I am wondering if they're not going to want to lay any at all. would putting in fake eggs help?? is there something else I can do for them to encourage them to lay eggs?
     
  2. Sportsterjeep

    Sportsterjeep Creekside Acres Farm

    Jun 1, 2010
    Mill Hall PA
    Depending on the breed, it may take them a little while to start laying after the molt. Also because of shorter days they slow way down. A couple things that help are to put a light in the coop thats tied into a timer. I've got mine set to come on at 6 am and go out at about 930 pm. Another thing is to make sure they are getting a good diet, and because they don't have access to all the summertime bugs, up their protein intake a little. Heat also helps if you can get some heat into the coop. Depending on the size of your coop, a brooder lamp will supply the heat and light necessary, white not red light. We use flock raiser here year round for feed. In the winter they get lots of treats to keep them happy. I just finished making them up some suet blocks from venison suet and scratch. They also get leftovers heated up and beefed up for them. We had some leftover lipton rice from dinner a couple nights ago. This got put in a pan over heat with some water, I added into that some oatmeal, a handfull of cornmeal, about a half dozen of the oldest eggs in the fridge and the broken shells. Heat it to about a pudding consistency and let them have at it. Happy girls lay more eggs....
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2010
  3. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Quote:What is their coop and run like? Diet, including protein percent and treats? How old? Have you added light to extend daylight hours? Is there any new stressor? What breed? Where are you? Do they free range?
     
  4. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    St. Louis, MO
    If you're sure they were moulting, you'll just have to wait. Refeathering takes a lot out of a bird AND at the same time their reproductive tract is rejuvenating. Tell your significant other the eggs will be bigger when they start again.
    Yesterday was the shortest day of the year. The good thing is that they did moult at the right time of year, you got the 2 things that stop lay out of the way at the same time.
    Day length and nutrition are the critical factors in egg laying. Make sure they have a good quality layer ration. Don't supplement too much scratch. I prefer greens for treats.
    When you're sure they've recovered from moult, start increasing light and in a week or so you'll have eggs.

    For a high protein treat you can get 1000 crickets or mealworms online for a little over $20.
    http://www.petco.com/product/12680/Case-O-Crickets-1000-count.aspx?CoreCat=OnSiteSearch
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2010
  5. sheeshshe

    sheeshshe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    yes for sure they were molting, the amount of feathers in the coop/run looked like a murder scene.

    so I should give them a week or two more. and give them some light. I"ll have to look and see where my light went.
     
  6. feathersnuggles

    feathersnuggles Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 4, 2009
    Seattle
    Did their combs turn paler when they molted, and has the intense red color returned, yet? Are they squatting again?

    Those are all signs their internal system is ready for egg-laying. If those signs haven't returned, you can give them a few extra protein treats, to help them with a nutritional boost.
     
  7. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Forest Grove, OR
    I was told just the other day that one may not get any eggs until spring after a big molt.
     
  8. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    South Georgia
    My Leghorn finished growing her new feathers over a month ago and I still haven't seen a white egg. She used to lay 6-7 a week. Beginning to think she's through or about through. But then she's my only original left, must be almost 3.
     
  9. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    Molts last 2 months and many say that is a minimum time to expect. Added protien and lighting will definitely speed up the process. I only use 12 hours lighting on a timer though the recomended is 14 to 16 hours. Agway sells a Egg Producer blend that is 21% protien, also availible at other stores is game bird feed that's as high. Personally I don't worry about heating, proper ventilation while still providing a non windy shelter is proving just fine with my birds and members here from Alaska.
     
  10. sheeshshe

    sheeshshe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    their combs are very very light. [​IMG]
     

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