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Laying during the winter

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by JackieK318, Nov 29, 2007.

  1. JackieK318

    JackieK318 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 29, 2007
    Missouri
    In the last week, I have had one egg. I'm hungry! [​IMG] And the girls are bare.

    I've read about moulting and egg laying temps, but have never been through this before:

    Do chickens stop laying for a period of months during the winter?

    If the temp is 45 - 80 degrees in the coop along with a light, but freezing outside, will they lay?

    I'm starting to think about knitting some sweaters for the girls at this point - how long does the moulting period last?

    My Australorps have new feathers growing in (however, they're older and were already bare from rooster activities), does this mean they're finished with their moulting?

    Do roosters moult like hens?

    Do they only moult in winter - I saw this bare naked Leghorn at the feed mill last May - was it just moulting?
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2007
  2. SweetLilRachy00

    SweetLilRachy00 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2007
    Simpsonville, SC
    I'm interested in seeing what the others say on this. I've been wondering the same thing.


    [​IMG]
     
  3. hinkjc

    hinkjc Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Yup, sure sounds like your birds are in moult. This is the time of year. Some moult in early fall and others choose late fall. I have a couple in moult and finishing up. Moult is brought on by reduced day time light. This is a natural process of shutdown and rejuvination, so to speak. They shut down laying so they can grow new plumage for spring. All chickens moult if allowed to do so. You can stop a moult from starting by keeping them on supplemental light. The moult from start to finish (meaning no eggs) can last for several months, which is quite normal.

    Jody
     
  4. JackieK318

    JackieK318 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 29, 2007
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    Thanks, Jody! Should I put something on the bare chickens so they don't get frost bite while outside? Vaseline? Vest? [​IMG] My neighbors will really think I've lost it if they see a chicken in an outfit, but I don't want a cold/frostbit chicken!
     
  5. hinkjc

    hinkjc Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    PA
    You can put a saddle on them, but I have never had a bird get frostbite on the back....sunburn in the summer, but not frostbite. I use saddles to prevent sunburn so I bet they would help for frost bite and even helping them hold some heat.

    Jody
     

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