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Mysterious non egg layer?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by silkiemumma, Sep 10, 2016.

  1. silkiemumma

    silkiemumma In the Brooder

    Jul 31, 2016
    Kent UK
    I recently adopted my Plymouth barred, she is 2 years old & saved her from the pot.
    She's been stressed from the move but has finally settled in fine and even takes her self to bed at last!
    When I adopted her I was told she's pure bred and is out of egg laying season.
    I'm new to poultry keeping & assumed once she had settled and calmed she'd return to laying eggs.
    But she hasn't, she was in the next box the other night but haven't had any signs of egglets!
    What can I do? When will see lay?

    Confused new chicken mum


  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Chickens go through a laying cycle. When they start laying, around 5-6 months old, they lay for pretty much a year straight. Then, they molt and usually take the winter months off laying. They start back up in the spring, laying a bit fewer eggs this time. Lay through summer to fall, then molt and take a break again. That's probably what you're seeing, and why she was headed for the pot. Most folks don't butcher perfectly good hens who are still productive, but older hens who don't lay much anymore are fair game.

    So, your hen is basically a pet. It's quite likely she'll give you eggs again in the spring, but I wouldn't hold my breath for eggs until Easter or so. You can try researching supplemental lighting and see if you want to try to trick her body into thinking it's summer and see if that will get her to lay. Or, you can simply enjoy her.
  3. toomuch

    toomuch Chirping

    Feb 9, 2015
    When I got my chicken she was a year old and it took her 3 months to start laying even though we were in spring
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Crowing

    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    First of all, it can take a month or two for a hen to start laying in a new environment. Secondly, it's molting season. All their energy is being spent on replacing their old feathers. Thirdly, as the days shorten, they don't get enough daylight to stimulate egg production. That's what the previous owner meant by 'out of season'.
    You likely won't see eggs from her till the days begin to lengthen and spring is on the way. Once she does start back up, she will be a very good layer of large brown eggs. And Barred Rocks are just plain fun to have around. They have a lot of personality.
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Ditto donrae and junebuggena advice.

    She's a really nice looking bird.
  6. silkiemumma

    silkiemumma In the Brooder

    Jul 31, 2016
    Kent UK
    Thank you! I was just worried she was ill. I'm not fussed about eggs from her, she is a character. She'll scream the house down once she sees me and I haven't got treats in my hand, but once I'm approaching with some food she's my best friend!!

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