is it possible that 3 hens 1 yr old have never laid eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by 1bigpekker, Dec 6, 2016.

  1. 1bigpekker

    1bigpekker In the Brooder

    Dec 3, 2016
    I have a person who has 3 hens, 2 americaunas and 1 barred rock that wants to sell me for $40.00.
    They are all 1 yr old.
    His city ordinance prevents him from having chickens.
    He swears that he bought the hens locally as pullets and thinks they will start to lay in the spring next year.
    The pic he sent me shows that they are mature and look healthy and indeed are hens.
    They are in a tractor type coop in a small back yard.
    Can 3 healthy hens not have laid any eggs for a year?
    I am going to see them and look for any obvious problems, but would appreciate any insight as to what to look for.
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] I think this is a case of buyer beware. 1 year old hens that 'have never laid' are very likely older hens that are beyond their peak production years. I'd stay away from this deal.
    1 person likes this.
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    If fed incorrectly hens might not lay a lot and possibly eat any eggs laid. There are a few breeds that start later than others.

    They should be bright eyed, and clean looking. Hens in lay will have big red shiny combs. Scales on the legs shouldn't be raised but flat and they should look healthy, and in good feather, and they sound healthy, no sneezing, wheezing, or rattling. Trust your gut. Bringing home sick birds can compromise your property for future birds.
  4. BlueBaby

    BlueBaby Crowing

    I agree with what sourland said. Some people who are trying to get rid of older hens will tell the potential buyer that they are younger than they are. Not all people are honest. If you really want to have some that will lay eggs, I would get some POL (point of lay) pullets, or pullets that are getting close to it. Younger pullets than that are ok, but you will have to feed them until they are old enough to lay eggs. But, this way you know that your egg supply will be good for at least a couple of years.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2016
  5. 1bigpekker

    1bigpekker In the Brooder

    Dec 3, 2016
    Thanks for the insight.
    I found out the 2 americaunas are 8 months old.
    I have 7 older birds (3 yrs) and thought some older hens would transition easier in to my flock.
    I might go take a look at them just to satisfy my curiosity.
    In the pic he sent me, one of the americaunas (the one in the back) has a comb, never seen that before.
    Here is a pic of the birds.

  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!

    I don't believe either of those birds are Ameraucanas but rather probably Easter Eggers, crosses from maybe Ameraucanas.
    Typical and common marketing 'untruth' started at the hatchery, they still may lay blue/green eggs.

    But that's besides the point......older birds are not going to integrate much better than younger birds.
    Their size might help them in the fights....but it's all about territory.
    Hope you have an integration plan, and are willing to risk bringing disease and pests into your flock.

    Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
    This is good place to start reading, tho some info is outdated IMO:
  7. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Crowing

    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    I've had birds not lay for nearly a year. Didn't light the coop and the pullets were not in lay by solstice. They were hatched early May and didn't lay until the following April.
  8. It does not seem worth the risk to me, bringing adult birds into an established flock. I would get chicks in the spring and cull the slackers in the fall. But I am new I don't know squat [​IMG] I do know that from my research here that I will be having a closed flock.

    Gary from Idyllwild Ca here
  9. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    I too would stick with chicks. They are easier to integrate and don't come with the risk of diseases like older birds do. You can order as few as three at a couple of hatcheries.

    They do look healthy, and like they should be laying. My batch from May 23 about half have started with a few that haven't yet.
  10. junebuggena

    junebuggena Crowing

    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    That pic shows a Barred Rock, an Easter Egger, and a Production Red. The Barred Rock looks like she's molting. And it is very possible that they haven't been fed properly, and thus have not laid.

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