How many years will a hen lay eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Mrs.ChickChick, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. Mrs.ChickChick

    Mrs.ChickChick Songster

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    I'm sure it varies by breed, but what have been your experiences?
     
  2. DTchickens

    DTchickens Crowing

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    Bailey, Mississippi.
    most i've owned stop at 8, Slow down around 3-4.. But i've also owned a great many of chickens over the years that laid until 10, 12, 13, 14, etc (oldest i've had was 15) and never really slowed down.. all in the health of the hen i believe.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2009
  3. msgenie516

    msgenie516 The Happy Hen

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    May 16, 2008
    Nesconset, LI, NY
    Hi,

    I have some older RIR hens (I'm guessing about 3 years old) that I purchased full-grown and they were in poor shape. I got them back to looking decent but they are not the best layers. I have a feeling they were originally battery hens (their beaks have been trimmed) as they were absolutely terrified of people when I first got them.

    That has all changed and now they practically "attack" me looking for treats. But they will probably never be really good layers due to their questionable background. However, I am glad I could give them a good life.

    I understand it is best (unless you really need the eggs) not to give them extra lighting in the winter months so that they continue to lay for a longer period of time. They are born with all the eggs they will ever have, so you can conserve some this way.

    Good luck! [​IMG] Genie
     
  4. Mrs.ChickChick

    Mrs.ChickChick Songster

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    Quote:WOW! I had no idea they could lay that long. What do you feed them?
     
  5. hen-thusiast

    hen-thusiast Songster

    Apr 8, 2009
    Utah
    I'm curious to an answer as well. What's the secret? [​IMG]
     
  6. Mrs.ChickChick

    Mrs.ChickChick Songster

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    May 23, 2009
    North central Illinois
    Anyone?

    Also, does the quality of their eggs differ from when they were younger hens?
     
  7. DTchickens

    DTchickens Crowing

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    Bailey, Mississippi.
    Mrs.ChickChick :

    Quote:WOW! I had no idea they could lay that long. What do you feed them?

    Sorry for the late reply, I'll have to recall.. That is when we had A LOT of American gamefowl. and we fed special mixes we would buy 50# bags of feed at a time, I think it was scratch, layer pellets, alfalfa, And occasionally cat/dog food for the summer months while they are molting for protein. Maybe a few other things as well, i can remember us experimenting with severel different feed mixes over the years. Also used gamebird mix if i remember correctly..

    We also fed veggies/fruits occasionally. Never scraps. The key i believe is to keep them from getting fat, and then you have to know how to tell the difference [​IMG].

    PS. We knew one guy that had a 18 year old pair that he still raised chicks out of, i tell this story quite a bit as well. And quality of the eggs differing.. I didn't really notice.​
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2009
  8. Black Jaque

    Black Jaque In the Brooder

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    So when people say the hens "slow down" after 3 years, how much do they slow down?
     

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