My birds have stopped laying - please help

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mikele86, Apr 19, 2019.

  1. mikele86

    mikele86 In the Brooder

    15
    12
    26
    Apr 9, 2019
    I've acquired a couple birds about a month ago now. (pictured below) The easter egger started laying just a couple days after introducing her into the new coop/environment. She was on schedule every 24-26 hrs. The other girl which I believe is a moran has never laid an egg with me. At one point I thought she was molting because she was loosing feathers here and there. This has seemed to have stopped just recently.

    Within the past week, the EE has stopped laying eggs. A couple weeks back I started to allow them to roam free in my backyard. During both occasions they were spooked by a dog or neighbor and took off much further from their coop then I was comfortable with. Both times I had to chase them down, corner them, and get them back into their coop. Do you think these couple instances stressed the EE out to the point where she no longer lays eggs? Is this just a phase? Please help... any recommendations would be great! THANKS IN ADVANCE

    IMG_0974.jpg
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Crossing the Road

    15,374
    14,271
    762
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Well, yes. Stress kills laying. And these hens have had their share lately.

    They will start to lay again when they feel relaxed and safe from external threats. Let's hear what you are feeding them. Nutrition also plays an important role in laying.
     
    GC-Raptor and DobieLover like this.
  3. mikele86

    mikele86 In the Brooder

    15
    12
    26
    Apr 9, 2019
    Aside from layer pellets, I feed them oats, meal worms, earth worms (my son enjoys that) and sometimes mixed bird seed with corn.
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Crossing the Road

    15,374
    14,271
    762
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    A laying hen of average size needs between 100 and 105 grams of protein per day. Look on the feed bag label and see what the protein content is. If they get equal or more amounts of treats to feed, they may not be getting enough protein in order to lay.

    The solution is to feed them far fewer treats, anything other than layer feed, so as not to dilute their protein intake.

    Many of us forego the layer feed and feed an all-flock feed which is higher in protein. We provide oyster shell free choice so they still get the calcium they need. Even then, we try to keep other sorts of treats to a bare minimum, especially, oats and corn and table scraps.
     
    GC-Raptor, aart and mikele86 like this.
  5. mikele86

    mikele86 In the Brooder

    15
    12
    26
    Apr 9, 2019
    noted. Thank you!
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    59,460
    47,533
    1,327
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Are these your only birds?
    Any idea how old they are?
    Both Marans and EE are not always prolific and/or consistent layers.

    Oh, and...Welcome to BYC! @mikele86
    Is she on nest most the day and all night?
    When you pull her out of nest and put her on the ground, does she flatten right back out into a fluffy screeching pancake?
    Does she walk around making a low cluckcluckcluckcluckcluck(ticking bomb) sound on her way back to the nest?
    If so, then she is probably broody and you'll have to decide how to manage it.
    upload_2019-4-20_8-33-31.png
     
  7. If you say you just started letting them roam freely in the yard, i suspect they are laying as usual only not in the coop.
    Have you looked around your yard for hidden nests?
     
  8. Anndie

    Anndie Chirping

    23
    86
    64
    Mar 28, 2018
    Amity, Oregon
    Also check for any dark spots in the coop that you can't see into. I just pulled six eggs from under the steps leading into my coop. Unauthorized egg layage !
     
  9. mikele86

    mikele86 In the Brooder

    15
    12
    26
    Apr 9, 2019
    Update: Over the weekend I got eggs from BOTH of them! my first egg from the maran... I stopped feeding them so many treats, so maybe that has helped.. This is quite the learning curve :) Thanks everyone!

    IMG-1032.JPG
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: