how many years do you keep your egg layers?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by ske1806, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. ske1806

    ske1806 Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 18, 2010
    Patterson, New York
    When do you start getting baby chicks to replace older layers?
  2. sheaviance1

    sheaviance1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2010
    I am interested in other people's answer to this question too. My game plan is to start replacing when i see a drastic decline in egg production. I'm not sure at what age to expect that though.
  3. happyhensny

    happyhensny Brown Barns Farm

    Due to the problem with "chicken math" We keep the old girls and just get or hatch new chicks every year. So, in the end, every year there will be more birds and coop size will never be large enough.

    Love it!

    I know, not very practical but I do not want to eat a tough old bird anyway. [​IMG]
  4. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Typically, they will have their first heavy molt around 18 months, though this does vary, and will lay fewer (but larger) eggs after that. Some will lay some eggs for several years or even all their life. I have 6 that are over 3 years and get 3 or 4 eggs a day; there is one younger one who I'm not sure is laying. The blue eggs used to be medium and are now at least an XL. I have some chicks coming along but don't plan to replace anyone.

    Just depends on your goals and management style.
  5. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    When I was into this phase I'd sell my layers during their 3rd year--I'd get them in the spring, they start laying that fall then I'd sell them during their 3rd summer. I found there was a better market for them at this stage since they were still fairly reliable layers. I no longer do this so am running a home for aged chickens since I'm not interested in production any more--just need a few eggs.
  6. karimw

    karimw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 7, 2010
    Eastern IA
    My farrier replaces his Golden Comets every 2 years. Mine are all still only a year old or less, so I haven't gotten to that point yet.
  7. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

    Aug 3, 2009
    Quote:My oldest girls are only 2 years old, but I'm sure I'll do what woodmort is doing when the time comes.
  8. belly

    belly Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 7, 2011
    Murray Utah
    I just got my girls in Sept 2010 so hopefully it will be awhile before they need to be replaced. But when that day comes I will just have to build a retirement coop it just does not seem right to cull them after they provided you with years of fresh eggs. And not to mention they are really friendly and will let me pick them up and hold them like my cats and dogs will.
  9. goldeneggtees

    goldeneggtees Fluffy Butt Nut

    Mar 11, 2009
    Long Island, NY
    aww, I think you guys are nice! :–)

    Quote:My oldest girls are only 2 years old, but I'm sure I'll do what woodmort is doing when the time comes.
  10. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

    Mar 22, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    Quote:I do the same. when my birds no longer lay, I'll let them help me out with the bug eating. [​IMG]

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