If hens 'drop' for me. Does that mean they are still laying?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by LunaMarieWolf, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. LunaMarieWolf

    LunaMarieWolf Chirping

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    I have a few hens I bought a while back. They seem to be liking their new home.

    But I'm not so sure if they are laying.

    They could be laying their eggs anywhere around the yard, but I've found none so far.

    But every time I walk up to them they "drop" for me like I am a Rooster.

    The rooster tries to hop on but they say no and then run away.

    Are my little chickens just hiding their eggs somewhere and I can't find them? Or what?

    Noted: I have no clue the hens age but they are Red-sex Links.
     
  2. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Crowing

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    The hen squat is a sign of laying, or near laying if young.

    A better sign is to look at their vent. Wide, moist vent, with 3 fingers or so spread between the pubic bones indicates laying. Small, dry, puckerish vent with 2 fingers or less spread between the pelvic bones means not laying.

    You probably have an egg nest somewhere. Watch to see where they linger in the yard.

    LofMc
     
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  3. TexasWineGuy

    TexasWineGuy Songster

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    I gotta follow this thread...

    TWG
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    This^^^
    Here's some visuals to assist:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/who-is-laying-and-who-is-not-butt-check.73309/

    If exam shows that they are laying, then....
    Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for a week or so can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. Fake eggs/golf balls in the nests can help 'show' them were to lay. They can be confined to coop and maybe run 24/7 for a few days to a week, provided you have adequate space and ventilation, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it. ..at least for a good while, then repeat as necessary.
     
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Crossing the Road

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    Sometimes all it takes to retrain them is to keep them confined till noon. This is especially true of new hens to a property that haven't developed a habit of where to lay.
    IMO, squatting for an owner is only loosely related to laying. It is more of a desire to breed than that laying is imminent.
    I haven't had a hen squat for me in many years but I sometimes get 20-30 eggs a day.
    A move to a new property will be enough of a stress to stop ovulation. That can continue for a long time, especially after summer solstice.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    ...or just plain submission.
     
  7. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Crossing the Road

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    That could be. I just don't have any submissive hens. They either run like the wind or attack.
     
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  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Same here but I don't try to 'pet' them either.
     
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