how long for hens and roos?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Gazinga, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    ok, i will get an average of 3 good years of egg laying from a hen, right?

    How long until they stop laying all together? (average)

    And also, how long until a roo typicaly needs to be replaced?
  2. chickenpiedpiper

    chickenpiedpiper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2008
    New Durham NH
    I have RIR hens that are over 5-6 years old, still laying very regularly, as well as an ameracauna hen same age laying almost daily. they only stop when they molt, or go broody.

    Why would you need to replace a rooster, unless you were changing genetics, or getting rid of a mean one, they dont tend to 'wear out' lol

    There was one post on here of someone who had a 17 year old blind rooster who raised all his chicks for him!
  3. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    17 years old! dang!

    anyone else, does this sound about right? i truly hope so, i love my chickens, i wanna keep the original batch, but i know, like all of us, their time will come to "retire"
  4. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    I've read that meat-strain roosters begin to lose fertility quickly - less than a year.

    Apparently it doesn't pay for them to be built like Nuclear Androids [​IMG].

  5. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    meat-strain? how do i know if i have a meat-strain?
  6. Matt A NC

    Matt A NC Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 22, 2007
    Morganton, NC
    This is on average for a typical healthy bird, there are exceptions to everything. With better then average care, they can keep going and going.

    The best years of laying are up to 3 years old. At that point they are supposed to start decreasing in the amount of laying. You may not really notice it unless you have several old Gals. Just their molts may take longer and the time between laying cycles will increase. At 5 years they can really start to decrease alot more.

    I did have two 8-10 year olds that laid very well until their last year.

    As long as a Roo is healthy and "active" he shouldn't have any problems. My DotMan will be 5 in May. He is still 'getting the job done'.

  7. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    how long is molt typically? do they stop laying through th ewhole molt or at all?
  8. Matt A NC

    Matt A NC Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 22, 2007
    Morganton, NC
    Quote:Molts can last from 6 weeks to 3 months and there are exceptions. I have a standard cochin hen that has been molting since October. She has been slowly replacing a few feathers at a time. She is blue and you can tell the old feathers from the new. From the look of it, she should be done in another month or so.

    I have some young ladies that kept laying through their molt. It was only an egg every 3rd day, but that was good considering how heavy some molts were. The old gals stopped completely in October and have just recently started again. If they weren't pets they would be heading for the freezer. Bunch of freeloaders.

  9. Gazinga

    Gazinga Chook Norris

    yeah, i would consider teh freezer too, but my flock is new and i have no "back up" hens yet, next year will be a different story
  10. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    My birds are 2 yrs old and each one averages 5 eggs a week. I hope mine keep producing for several years. I have one bird that faithfully lays an eggs a day and may skip a day every couple of weeks. All of my birds are banded.

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