How old is old?

RodNTN

Hatchaolic
6 Years
May 22, 2013
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Hi! My oldest hen "Jewel" (Black Sex Link) turned 11 in September, and is still going strong! She still runs around with the younger ladies, and she has no trouble keeping up. This is very surprising to me, since I have heard that high production breeds usually don't live but a few years. She was 10 when she last laid an egg. She just finished her molt and she looks fantastic!

So, how long do your hens typically live? Do you do anything to prolong their life? I certainly don't :lol: And when do you start considering your girls "old"?

Have a blessed day!
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Nov 23, 2010
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Your bird is old.
Due to predation, my birds don't always survive to old age. I start considering them old at 5+ but that doesn't mean I don't keep them as long as they are productive even if that is only a few months a year. I was talking to a Purina poultry nutritionist who told me they were considering producing a feed for older hens due to the interest in BYCs. He told me the difference would be higher vitamin and mineral content due to older birds being less able to uptake those nutrients.
ETA
I change legband colors every year and start rotating them again after 5 years. I rarely have older birds still wearing the colors of the current year's birds.
 
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RodNTN

Hatchaolic
6 Years
May 22, 2013
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587
The Volunteer State
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My Coop
Your bird is old.
Due to predation, my birds don't always survive to old age. I start considering them old at 5+ but that doesn't mean I don't keep them as long as they are productive even if that is only a few months a year. I was talking to a Purina poultry nutritionist who told me they were considering producing a feed for older hens due to the interest in BYCs. He told me the difference would be higher vitamin and mineral content doe to older birds being less able to uptake those nutrients.
ETA
I change legband colors every year and start rotating them again after 5 years. I rarely have older birds still wearing the colors of the current year's birds.

A feed for older hens would be nice, especially since at least half of my hens will be slowing down in the next couple of years. I guess some legbands would come in handy! :p
 

RodNTN

Hatchaolic
6 Years
May 22, 2013
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8 and still kicking! She hatched two chicks this summer!! And hatches them all the time still!

Wow! Good going for her! Unfortunately, Jewel has never been broody in her whole long life! I bet she would've made a great mother, she is highest in the pecking order and keeps everything running great.
 

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