Im new to chickens, I have questions

scottpat2

In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 3, 2014
20
0
24
Pennsylvania
I got chickens and yes im new to chickens, when do they lay eggs?help...
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usedhobarts

Songster
6 Years
Apr 18, 2014
108
29
129
From my experience here is what I can tell you. From the pic it looks like you have 5 hens and one rooster. The hens( pullets) look like they are getting close. I added 18 pullets to my flock a while back and they are just now starting to lay. 3 of them have layed an egg or two in past days. What I noticed on the 3 that are laying is that their combs got more pronounced and a much brighter red with in a few days of laying. You can also tell by examining the vent but I have not personally done that. If you think they are close you should put some fake eggs or golf balls in their nesting box/s and leave them until they actually lay an egg amongst them. It worked well for mine. Another thing is diet. Giving pullets a healthy dose of layer mash for a while can also speed things up I'm told but in the end nature dictates more than anything and when the first egg is ready they will lay it.

As your temps are cooler and the days are getting shorter your girls will lay less than they will in the spring and summer naturally. You appears to have reds , a gold star and a barred rock mix. These are all good layer breeds with nice large brown eggs. Without adding artificial light I'm guessing once they start laying you can expect 3-4 eggs per week in the winter with those breeds from each bird. Come march and April they should go into heavy laying mode and they will lay 5-6 eggs per week barring any stressful events.

Your chickens may be a bit stressed simply because you just got them and moved them into a new inviroment. They may have started laying quicker at the ladies place they were used to than yours.
That's natural and nothing to worry about. If you add a tablespoon or two of apple cider vinegar to water feeder daily it helps reduce their stress a bit from coming into a new environment.

I found that just being patient and friendly around new chickens seems to calm them and happy chickens lay much more eggs.

Good luck with your girls. Fresh eggs are awesome and exciting to start getting them. I still get a kick out collecting eggs. I got a green for the first time a few days ago unexpectedly and it was just like the first time I got an actual egg.
 

The ChickenKing

Songster
5 Years
Jun 24, 2014
2,943
14
146
NY
Once they do start laying don't be surprised if the eggs are abnormal or shelless, it's pretty normal for the first couple of eggs they lay.
 

usedhobarts

Songster
6 Years
Apr 18, 2014
108
29
129
Here are some pics I just took of my pullets just starting to lay. The first photo you will see two barred rocks, ( black and white ones). The one furthest back is laying and the other has not yet. If you look close you will see the difference in their combs. The second photo is a gold star pullet that layed today for the first time. The third photo is an adult red which just shows her mature comb for reference and the forth photo is a wellsumer mix that just started laying. These 18 pullets were all hatched within days of each other. They are all about 23 weeks old.


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scottpat2

In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 3, 2014
20
0
24
Pennsylvania
Thank you so much, very helpful. I actually go out and talk to them (sounds crazy) and they recognize my voice and come running now. They are spoiled too, they love snacks, lol. Do u use heating lamps in the winter? Some people say to and othes not to , being new to this I can use all the help I can get. And light?
 

The ChickenKing

Songster
5 Years
Jun 24, 2014
2,943
14
146
NY
Thank you so much, very helpful. I actually go out and talk to them (sounds crazy) and they recognize my voice and come running now. They are spoiled too, they love snacks, lol. Do u use heating lamps in the winter? Some people say to and othes not to , being new to this I can use all the help I can get. And light?
I'm planning on using a brooder lamp to heat above the water, but they should be fine as long as the coop I is insulting, draft-free, and has good ventilation.
 

scottpat2

In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 3, 2014
20
0
24
Pennsylvania
Ok cool, ill get busy working on some of that, just need a lil insulation. The boards we built it out of are like 2 inches thick, it was are heavy duty shed we kept the harley in, its been demoted to garage, lol
 

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