My Young Hens Aren't Laying! Help!!!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by ScarlettGirl11, Oct 6, 2014.

  1. ScarlettGirl11

    ScarlettGirl11 Out Of The Brooder

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    hi everyone! I have about 20 young hens (7-9 months old) that range from RIR, Silkies, cochins, naked neck, a few mixes, and some duck hens that aren't laying. I was getting 3 eggs a day from one of my RIR and two of my ducks but now im getting absolutely nothing. they are all housed in a huge fenced in yard with a metal shed for shelter, kiddy pool for water (gets new water twice a day), several nesting boxes, and several plastic dog kennels. They get layer pellets and cracked corn once to twice a day with oyster shell in a dog bowl for when they want it, and they have access to grit, I also feed table scraps when I have them. The chicken yard houses, several different kinds of chicken hens and roos, 3 pairs of ducks, and a pair of turkeys. pls help I have no idea whats going on and iv been doing extensive research but cant find anything that will help.....
     
  2. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Don't know about ducks, don't have them, but could your girls be going into molt?
     
  3. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    I agree with iwiw60 - I don't know squat about ducks but with the time of year I'd wonder about molt too. If that's the case, there is a cure, but you won't like it any better than I did. That cure is time. Oh, you'll read a million things to make molt go easier on your birds, but ultimately it's like a cold....you can treat the secondary symptoms but the cold is still there until it runs its course naturally. Sorry, wish there was a simple answer, but so many factors can lead to a drop in egg production it's just hard to give an answer that makes the owner feel better.

    You might check around your place, especially if your chickens do any free ranging, to see if they are laying somewhere besides their nest boxes.
     
  4. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Agreed @Blooie ... not saying this applies to the OP, but a lot of new chicken mamas think they are egg-laying machines that just pop out an egg every single day, and that is not the case. During spring/summer and even into early fall yes, they are egg-laying machines, but late fall and through winter that is not the case. Shorter days, cold wintery weather, molting, etc., all attribute to them "slowing down"....and quite frankly I think my girls deserve a break. I don't keep lights turned on in the coop 24/7 just to get another egg....give 'em a rest I say, and a well-deserved one at that, too! [​IMG]
     
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  5. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    Same here. I don't plan on artificially supporting continued egg production. I figure Mother Nature gave the internal calendars for a reason and I'm not about to tamper with it. But then I'm just a simple backyard chicken raiser and I primarily have them to provide for my family. We don't need a couple of dozen a day to get by quite nicely.

    That said, I do understand when chicken owners worry about a decline in egg production. That diligence is s a good thing. Sometimes that decline can be due to health issues and if we aren't paying attention to what could be one of the first symptoms of a problem then we miss a chance to take action early. So it's a Catch 22...the usual "to panic, or not to panic" thing! [​IMG] I will opt to look for the simple things first - molting, going broody, or hiding eggs. I hope that you find out what's going on, ScarlettGirl and I'm sure it's as simple as molting or broodiness.
     
  6. ScarlettGirl11

    ScarlettGirl11 Out Of The Brooder

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    how can you tell if they are molting?
     
  7. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Your girls will look something like this.....

    [​IMG]
    Sometimes they go through a "light molt", other times they look almost naked!!
     
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  8. ScarlettGirl11

    ScarlettGirl11 Out Of The Brooder

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    ok thanks that's what it is!!!!
     
  9. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Now that you've identified what it is, try to "up" their protein intake with extras such as a hard-boiled egg, shell and all, finely crushed up...they go crazy for that. This will help their little systems re-grow feathers more quickly .... chickens.....go figure!! [​IMG]
     
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