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How to tell they're ready to lay eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Chooky_chick, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. Chooky_chick

    Chooky_chick Hatching

    Oct 27, 2008
    I have 6 Australorps, I've ahd them just over a week and when I got them I wads told they'd be laying in about a month. How can I tell when they are ready to lay, behaviour wise and when do I start feeding layer pellets?

  2. TaLani

    TaLani ~ Gemini Chick ~

    Oct 2, 2008
    Bryson City, NC
    How red are the hen's combs & wattles? A sign that they might be getting ready is REALLY BRIGHT RED combs & wattles as well as FULLNESS of them. Also, if you have a roo in your flock, if you've noticed mating going on, then that's a sign that they're all maturing for sure.

    I have 2 groups of chickens - the first group is 5 mos old (22+wks old) and the second group is 4 mos old (18+wks old) & I've not gotten an egg yet. I really don't expect to see eggs for another month or two from either group especially since the weather has cooled down here and less daylight too. I've gone ahead & started to feed my chickens the layer feed & give them oyster shell to ensure that they have a good amt of calcium in them prior to laying.

    Many forum members say that chickens don't start laying until they are 6-8+ mos old - just keep [​IMG].
  3. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Songster

    Oct 1, 2008
    Yorkshire, Ohio
    I would start feeding them layer feed right away. It will give them all the nutrients they need to produce eggs. As for being able to tell when, one thing I noticed with mine is that there combs and waddles start turning very red rather than pink, and they become more developed. They will also start checking out the nesting box. I had mine for several weeks before they even stepped foot in nesting box. A few days after I noticed the wood shaving bowled, I got my first egg.

    Hope this helps. Be patient and you will be rewarded with "yummy eggs" as my three year old says.
  4. Pumpkinpup

    Pumpkinpup Poultry Princess 10 Years

    Jul 16, 2008
    North-West Georgia
    TaLani is right about the wattles and comb but other indicators are that they will be more vocal and they will squat when you reach to pet them or be checking out the nest boxes with great interest. [​IMG]
  5. danamillette

    danamillette Songster

    Jul 16, 2008
    Northern Wisconsin
    I am playing the waiting game too! I have one BR that has within the past fews got BLOOD-red wattles, comb and face. She has also been talking to me non-stop when i come by her!
    Will keep you posted!
  6. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    The squat! We have the squat, too- and I started a thread about the vocal cacophany at our house, too...

    Just doing our part to keep this otherwise normal neighborhood weird!!
    1 person likes this.
  7. Chooky_chick

    Chooky_chick Hatching

    Oct 27, 2008
    Yeah, the copmbs are getting redder by the day. But I can't check out the squatting when you pet them as they run away every time i go near them! Thet are getting better though....since they know I bring them all the treats and scraps. I'll start mixing in the layer feed with what starter I have left and hopefully they'll start in the next week or two! Thanks so much for your help.
  8. wannabechickraiser

    wannabechickraiser In the Brooder

    May 28, 2008
    I have 10 austrolopes that are 25 weeks old. Four have been laying for the last 2 to 3 weeks. When I chase them from the neighbor's yard the ones who are laying squat down. Your first egg should be coming soon.
  9. sunnydee

    sunnydee Songster

    Jul 17, 2008
    I waited on the red comb and waddle thing..over a month and not one egg. The tell tale sign for mine was the squatting. Within 2 days we had an egg.
  10. danamillette

    danamillette Songster

    Jul 16, 2008
    Northern Wisconsin
    Update. Mine started laying 11/9 and as of last night...I have 7 eggs!

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