How long do chickens live?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cackilacky, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. cackilacky

    cackilacky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is, if you don't eat them. I've seen a wide range of life spans listed anywhere from 4-12 years. Just wondering what your experiences have been. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2010
  2. ThePamperedPullet

    ThePamperedPullet Chillin' With My Peeps

    Under good conditions, it is not unusual for a chicken to live to 10 years or beyond. We had our little Grandma B , a buff brahma bantam, just pass away. She was about seven when we got her which was about two years ago. She lived a good life.
     
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Depends what you mean. Even aside from predators, there are a lot of things can go wrong with a laying chicken, so it does not seem like many make it past 5 or 6 or 7 ish. They CAN live a lot longer than that. But if you start with, like, half a dozen chicks this year, it is pretty unlikely that any will still be around ten years from now, even with good care. Indeed it is not uncommon to lose a small percentage in their first few months of lay, i.e. less than a year old.

    The probability distribution of lifespans in chickens is a lot different-shaped than in humans.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     
  4. gallusdomesticus

    gallusdomesticus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There is actually a category for "World's Oldest Chicken" in the 2009 Guiness Book of World Records. Seems a hen in Alabama named Matilda was 16 when she passed. Here's her Wikipedia entry:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matilda_(chicken)

    I doubt she was laying too many eggs at that age!
     
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Someone on BYC had a 16 yr old chicken lay an egg, I know, and I am pretty sure I recall a couple people speak of having 18 and 19 yr old chickens.

    Pat
     
  6. Andi

    Andi Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a friend with 4 hens, well, 3 now, that turned 14 years last Spring. The first of the girls to die died this last Spring. The other 3 are still going.
     
  7. cackilacky

    cackilacky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow, those are some old chickens! Just started wondering about it because we have 5 chickens who are more or less all the same age. This means that they'll stop laying around the same time, so in a few years will have to add more and so on...Not that much room in the hen house and we're vegetarians. Might have to find a hen retirement home somewhere! [​IMG]
     
  8. lauriruth

    lauriruth Chillin' With My Peeps

    Or.....you could add on to the coup!!!! start your own retirement coup![​IMG]
     
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  9. usschicago1

    usschicago1 Suburban Cochins

    Aug 11, 2009
    Taunton, MA
    Quote:Whats there secret [​IMG]
     
  10. cackilacky

    cackilacky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I was starting to think the same thing myself! We do have the room. Yet more animals on the horizon! Anyone ever read "Enslaved by Ducks?"
     
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