Mature enough to lay eggs?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by mochicken, May 19, 2011.

  1. mochicken

    mochicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    NW Missouri
    My black sex link pullets I got about a month ago as "almost ready to start laying" have not started laying, thanks to the folks on here I have been looking around their faces to see when they red up as an indication they are about to start laying. When I was out cleaning the coop and run yesterday I saw the rooster breeding one of the girls and dancing around showing off like a teenage boy at hooters lol

    My question is, is this yet another sign that they should start laying soon? I have noticed a couple of the hens are in and out of the coop off and on during the day, never in the nesting box, they are just in there and right back out
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    The pullets love to check out the accommodations before actually checking in. [​IMG][​IMG]

    Last year, I raised out a dozen ISA Browns and a dozen BSL. The ISA began laying at 16-17 weeks. The Black Sex Link is simply a larger, more traditional bird made up of a Barred Rock and Red . Thus, their point of lay was a solid month later, if not 5 weeks. Their eggs were never as large as the ISA, but their heavier feathering gave them a distinct advantage in being cold hardy during last winter's bitter spell. Docile, stand offish, perhaps, but quiet, businesslike and purposeful. One thing I see in the mass production of this hybrid I wish the breeders would account for is the narrow hipped hens. One in five or six is too narrow bodied. I think that is a fault and should be avoided. The wide bodied bird is so much better producer and is so handsome to boot!!!
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2011
  3. mochicken

    mochicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    NW Missouri
    Thanks for the reply, I am still checking every day to see if my lil ladies have left me a gift but the only gifts they are leaving stink and have to be scooped lol. Soon enough I will have more eggs that I can eat so I guess its worth the wait lol
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Until your hens really "own" the nesting boxes, this isn't a good age for them to be roaming outside of their coop/run, ihmo. They need to learn how to lay in those boxes. After a month of solid laying, then I'd trust them to come back in from ranging about to lay. I don't know if you free range or not, but that is just another thing to keep in mind.
     
  5. mochicken

    mochicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    NW Missouri
    No they don't free range, they are in a fenced in coop and run


    As I was typing my last reply I thought hmm I didnt check today so I went out to check and YIPPEEE I got my first pulled egg [​IMG] I'm so happy lol
     
  6. tripletmumm

    tripletmumm Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2011
    Hood River, Oregon
    When I first started researching raising hens, everything I read said it takes 20 weeks for the chicks to get to egg laying maturity. However the 8 different breeds I had, didn't start until at least 5 months old. I think that is pretty common with most breeds.
     
  7. floridachickhatcher

    floridachickhatcher Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 22, 2011
    Hollister,FL
    Hens generally start to lay around 6mos but we put our 5mos in a month early so that they can start to eat the 17% laying mash and to get use to the yard and chicken house plus we herd the chickens in at dusk for lockdown so when my mom is walking around in the yard yelling CHOO! we want them to get use to the routine
     
  8. Waddling_Wamplers

    Waddling_Wamplers Out Of The Brooder

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    May 21, 2011
    another wonderfully educational thread thanks to BYC... thanks everyone. I can't wait until my girls start laying... but that is months away [​IMG]
     
  9. mochicken

    mochicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    NW Missouri
    You know I have had chickens in the past but I still had a big ol grin on my face when I opened the egg box and found an egg [​IMG] have not had one since but I think thats just my girls way of saying to be patient and good things are to come
     
  10. mochicken

    mochicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 27, 2011
    NW Missouri
    Ok I have gotten a total of 4 eggs in 5 days from the same girl, she is so sweet ( for now ) lol, when she is done laying and she sees me on the way she just goes off munching on stuff and leaves me a little brown egg [​IMG]
     

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