How do you know when it's serious?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BlueMoon, Sep 10, 2008.

  1. BlueMoon

    BlueMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 3, 2007
    Scenic Verbank, NY
    We've had a huge decline in egg production. I had been attributing it to summer, to moulting, to lice or mites...but the weather's cooled, only a few girls seem to be moulting and they've gotten Ivermectin for the lice/mites.

    I've separated hens from roos today, but again, hardly any eggs by noon. There are plenty off nesting boxes.

    Any thoughts on what else to try? I'm concerned that this drop is due to something more serious.
     
  2. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    It could be the declining sunlight. You're fairly far north in the USA - how much daylight are you getting each day? Here in WA State we're down to about 12 hours & change each day.

    According to yahoo answers, chickens need 12-14 hours daily. Might be time to add a light to your coop for the winter.

    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080219093512AAQFWiy
     
  3. BlueMoon

    BlueMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 3, 2007
    Scenic Verbank, NY
    Thanks - we get about 12 hours a day still. The big laying months are March - May. I'll try the light, but still wonder if something more serious is happening.
     
  4. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    You might think about other factors. Have there been predators spooking them? Have you moved them recently? Are there any changes in their environment that may have scared them (think like a chicken: laundry hanging out, you're wearing a different coat, neighbor's mowing the lawn again, etc.).

    Good luck and keep us posted!
     
  5. BlueMoon

    BlueMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 3, 2007
    Scenic Verbank, NY
    Come to think of it, I did start wearing a barn jacket!

    We're around 42 for latitude.

    I did bring in new chickens, but they're in another coop (and terrified to leave).
     
  6. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    Give them some time! It sounds like they need to adjust to the changes.

    Still, light on a timer might help, too.
     
  7. BlueMoon

    BlueMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 3, 2007
    Scenic Verbank, NY
    Ok, but going back in the records, they averaged two dozen eggs a day until the end of July and have dropped to averaging a dozen for about two weeks. If anything, about ten hens have reached laying age and I would have expected the number to climb.
    They do free range during the day and i occasionally find egg stashes...but not recently.
     
  8. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    Hmm... now I'm stumped if it's not the daylight or change things. Maybe someone with more knowledge than me can chime in here?
     
  9. 3peeps

    3peeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 4, 2007
    Try checking out this link. I just read somewhere on there about reasons for egg-production slowing down. Just look around and scroll down...I found lots of useful stuff.

    Hope this helps.

    http://www.msstate.edu/dept/poultry/diagext.htm
     

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