Light for Chickens

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by hydestone, Oct 25, 2010.

  1. hydestone

    hydestone Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 15, 2010
    Is it necessary to provide 14 hours of light for chickens to lay eggs? Should the natural daylight be supplemented morning and evening to maintain egg production?
     
  2. Moabite

    Moabite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2010
    Utah
    From what I've learned on BYC, it is better to give them extra light in the morning as you don't want the light to go out suddenly when it is dark at night. Chickens need to get on their roosts while the light is dimming.
     
  3. hydestone

    hydestone Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 15, 2010
    What happens if no light is provided? Can they stop laying eggs?
     
  4. Big C

    Big C J & C Farms

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    Dec 15, 2008
    Vernon Texas
    You can supplement lighting if you want to pay for it. Your costs vs egg production will increase exponentially with the decrease in natural light. Cold temps will eventually increase your costs. The depths of winter are like the heat of summer. Your egg production will decrease and your costs will rise if you supplement.
     
  5. hydestone

    hydestone Out Of The Brooder

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    Would you estimate a 50% drop in production with less light?

    I have 3 Plymouth Bard Rock and 3 Rhode Island Reds. None have laid an egg yet...should be in a month or so. There are 4 of us eating eggs...so if production dropped a bit it wouldn;t be a problem.
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2010
  6. birdicus7

    birdicus7 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 17, 2010
    Coatesville, PA
    I personally have never experienced that drastic of a drop. Maybe out of 24 laying hens I'd average 19-20 eggs a day.
     
  7. Big C

    Big C J & C Farms

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    Vernon Texas
    We do not supplement lighting or heat. Cost vs production ratio. Our flocks are free range, natural to our area. Heat usually reduces our production more than cold. Winter, at its coldest and least light we will see a decrease of about 20%. This also depends on your feed ration and range capabilities.
    It all depends on what you want to spend for 6 eggs.
     
  8. hydestone

    hydestone Out Of The Brooder

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    I don't have electricity run to the coop, although I plan to run some for heating the water. I am not thrilled about spending a bunch of money on electricity for light if it is not necessary for egg production.

    What about initial laying of eggs? Will they wait until spring to start laying or let nature take its course and start when 6 months?
     
  9. Duke of Orpington

    Duke of Orpington Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 12, 2009
    Knoxville, TN
    One cost effective lighting option might be LED Light Ropes. They come in various lengths and are very inexpensive to operate and the good ones are rated indoor/outdoor. I've seen coop pics on here with rope lighting installed.
     
  10. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

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    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    I run a 40 watt bulb, 5 hours a day at the darkest time of year. This costs .78/month or less than .03 per day. The cost is minimal & my girls lay lots of eggs. Just how I do it, but the cost is not a factor.
     
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