Molting and egg laying

Marinefam2053

Songster
Jul 18, 2019
81
156
107
Deep South East
The molting in my flock is in full force. Every day it looks like someone has ripped open a feathered pillows and spread it all over the coop and run. On top of that, the egg production had dropped drastically. I know this is normal and to be expected at this time of the year. All of my hens are 16/17 months old. Should I be concerned that at least 2-3 hens haven’t laid at all in the past week or so? This is my first time experiencing molting, so I want to make sure that I’m doing all the right things for them? Should I get any kind of supplements for nutrition? I’ll take all the advice!
 

Willow2253

Songster
Dec 6, 2019
905
2,776
226
Eastern Oregon
I’ve had hens molt and stop laying for over a month. It’s normal for it to take a while for them to get back into laying. It can take them a few weeks to finish molting and regrowing feathers too. I don’t usually feed anything special while they’re molting, but some higher protein treats can help.
 

Marinefam2053

Songster
Jul 18, 2019
81
156
107
Deep South East
Ditto Dat!!
None of my hens are laying, neither is my sole pullet who went broody a week or so ago.
One of my hens has gotten very broody... whatever eggs are in the coop, she won’t get off of them, and she also tries to peck at me when collecting eggs.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
Nov 27, 2012
87,534
105,357
1,727
SW Michigan
My Coop
One of my hens has gotten very broody... whatever eggs are in the coop, she won’t get off of them, and she also tries to peck at me when collecting eggs.
How long has she been broody...and do you want her to hatch out some chicks?

If you don't want her to hatch out chicks, IMO it's best to break her broodiness promptly.

My experience goes about like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest (or as soon as I know they are broody), I put her in a wire dog crate (24"L x 18"W x 21"H) with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop or run with feed and water.

I used to let them out a couple times a day, but now just once a day in the evening(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two. Or take her out of crate daily very near roosting time(30-60 mins) if she goes to roost great, if she goes to nest put her back in crate.

Tho not necessary a chunk of 2x4 for a 'roost' was added to crate floor after pic was taken.
1604755851521.png
 

Marinefam2053

Songster
Jul 18, 2019
81
156
107
Deep South East
How long has she been broody...and do you want her to hatch out some chicks?

If you don't want her to hatch out chicks, IMO it's best to break her broodiness promptly.

My experience goes about like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest (or as soon as I know they are broody), I put her in a wire dog crate (24"L x 18"W x 21"H) with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop or run with feed and water.

I used to let them out a couple times a day, but now just once a day in the evening(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two. Or take her out of crate daily very near roosting time(30-60 mins) if she goes to roost great, if she goes to nest put her back in crate.

Tho not necessary a chunk of 2x4 for a 'roost' was added to crate floor after pic was taken.
View attachment 2402346
She’s actually out more throughout the day. It’s mostly at night that she likes to sit in the nest box. I am trying not to handle them much as she’s molting right now too. But to answer your question about hatching chicks, no... not interested at this time. Maybe in the future, when I have more property, etc.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom