How old?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by valmom, Sep 23, 2007.

  1. valmom

    valmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 23, 2007
    Vermont
    We are chicken newbies, and we inherited 6 hens and 2 roosters. They are 2ng generation crossbred Arucaunas with the 4-H rooster they are with (don't remember what breed he is), and they lay light blue eggs. Very pretty- my co-workers love them [​IMG].

    My question is, how long do chickens lay eggs? We are the keep them until they die a natural death types, so how large a flock will I accumulate to keep us in eggs as the girls age and stop laying? We built the coop to fit, I think up to 20 hens, so we would have wiggle room as they age to add younger hens. I have heard chickens can live to be 15! (These are for the most part about 2 years old.)
     
  2. devora

    devora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Welcome to BYC and the world of chickens! How cool you have such pretty eggs.

    They lay heaviest in the first few years tapering off as they age.

    Hard to say how many you need to 'keep you in eggs.' How many eggs do you need? We have six hens for two adults and it is WAY more than we need (unless we were thinking of opening a quiche factory or raising our cholesterol thru the roof).
     
  3. valmom

    valmom Chillin' With My Peeps

    229
    1
    131
    Sep 23, 2007
    Vermont
    Actually, we currently have 6 hens, and I give away about a dozen a week to my grateful co-workers. So, probably we won't need babies for a few years yet?

    (Somehow I was thinking they only laid eggs for the first couple of years then were aged and stopped laying, like at 5 years old.)
     
  4. devora

    devora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Also remember that you might lose a bird or three (read the 'pest and predator' threads!) during the years.
     
  5. bantymum

    bantymum Chillin' With My Peeps

    Yes depending on the breed they usually taper off the lay at 5, however large heavy breeds can lay beyond that, and in my case way beyond that but this chook is the1% out of 100 that lives past 14!
    Good luck, youll see a pattern with your flock, one passes away so get 2. always get 2 at a time so they can share their annoyance when the established flock pick on them!
     

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