how long after molting do they "restart" laying?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by sueandthe6, Oct 22, 2014.

  1. sueandthe6

    sueandthe6 Chirping

    May 18, 2014
    southeast Pa
    I have a crew of 7. I never get more than 5 eggs a day- but I am ok with that. I am new to chickens and am having as much fun watching them as I do having the eggs. However, Since they molted about 3 weeks ago- the 2 leghorns are the just about the only ones laying. I got 6 of the 7 from someone early spring and he told me they were last summers babies so only supposed to be a year old. There were eggs the very next day after I brought them home and it was not a stress free move so I was pretty convinced they were good layers. Besides the two leghorns I have two buff orps, one cochin, a wyndotte and a mutt. used to get two decent sized light brownish eggs and a small darker one- now I have been getting the two whites and one of the bigger brown ones. No small one at all and only the one bigger one. The mutt and the wyndotte and the only ones who still look "in molt". Everyone else has refurbished themselves. I know we are going into the winter and they slow down some- do they stop completely? If not- when do I start to worry about the fact that no one seems to be laying? Its been a good 5 days at least if not a week that I am only getting the leghorn +1 egg. Everyone eats when I feed and they all come running for oats or mealworms. Also all interested in getting out when I open the door to range them so other than the no eggs- all seems well.
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 Free Ranging

    Feb 18, 2011
    Nice article on molting (note months are backwards from US.) In general older birds (in their second winter which if I under stand you correctly yours should be) usually take at least three months to go through a full molt and restart laying... if you give them added light in the winter. If you do not add light they will usually not start laying again until the daylight hours naturally increase again in the spring. Pullets, especially of production breeds, will often lay through at least the first winter without added light.
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Free Ranging

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    It depends on the severity of the molt. Molting can take a lot out of them. If they lose a drastic amount of weight, it will take them longer to start laying again, as they have to get their body weight back up first. A few months is a good average - some molt faster and some slower. Continue giving them mealworms for treats - they are very high in protein and it will help them through the molt.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2014

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