My girls have stopped laying!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by earlybird, Aug 8, 2008.

  1. earlybird

    earlybird In the Brooder

    Mar 25, 2008
    Oregon City
    I added ten new chicks to my flock this spring and they are just beginning to lay. But all of a sudden all but one of the older girls has stopped laying. I don't see any signs of moulting, that I recognize. Do chickens stop laying due to moulting before they start to lose their feathers? And will they actually lose all of their feathers, or is it gradual and you'll just see a few missing feathers? I'm just dismayed. Just when I expected to see a dozen a day, now I'm getting 1 or 2.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2008
  2. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Crowing Premium Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    I am not sure how to answer that question but am sure that someone on here will be more than happy to help you out. [​IMG]
  3. 2boxers

    2boxers Songster

    Feb 16, 2008
    Halifax Co Virginia
    My hens were molting and I really only knew because there were feathers all over the place. Two of them had bare patches on their backs but there didn't seem to be enough bare chicken skin to account for all those feathers! On top of the molting, it also got wicked hot here, and that stopped them. I don't guess that's a problem, though, in Oregon.

    My ladies are now beginning to lay again.
  4. tressiah

    tressiah In the Brooder

    Jul 28, 2008
    Beecher, Il
    would appreciate advice on why my girls aren't giving it up. I have a mixed flock, barred rocks, buffs, and 5 game hens I need to be rid of, and one very obcessed rooster,. He does his part, but I have had no eggs for 10 days now. I've tried all I know, fresh greens,fresh feed, cool water, fan in the coop to keep the air circulating, 12 + hours of daylight. anyone have any more suggestions for me ?
    all would be appreciated ! Thanks
    Tressia from Beecher ,IL.
  5. CUDA

    CUDA Songster

    Mar 4, 2008
    This is the time of the year for the moult, and this will slow laying way down. The moult can be long and slow, or so quick that your birds end up practically naked! I wouldn't be overly concerned with not getting a lot of eggs right now, it will pick back up. The main thing is make sure they are on a good balanced diet, and don't be afraid to up the protein level a bit during the moult, as it will help out with that. Black oil sunflower seeds will help with the new feathers as well. You can see an article on the moult HERE . Good luck!
  6. belibutn

    belibutn Songster

    Apr 11, 2008
    East TN
    if it's not a molt, perhaps they are laying somewhere else, or the eggs are getting taken before you get to them by someone/thing
  7. earlybird

    earlybird In the Brooder

    Mar 25, 2008
    Oregon City
    Thank you for the responses. Have you ever heard of squirrels taking eggs? I've noticed a grey ground squirrel going in and out of the barn and today one of my "dummy" eggs disappeared. It's a little wooden one and it's just gone. I've had one of my plastic dummy eggs disappear before too. WTHeck?

    I think its actually a moulting issue, but I'm so glad you posted the article about the moult. I have been giving my chickens a little dry cob that I'm actually carrying out to the cows. I give them very little, but it could be enough to cause the problem. That article specifically refers to not giving them corn in the summer.

    Thank you for the helpful info!

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