New chickens aren't laying - help!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by maeve27, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. maeve27

    maeve27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 28, 2014
    Hi, I am just into the 3rd week of my two new chickens being here. They have a lovely quarantine coop and run but go free range with my two original warrens most days. There is still some pecking order establishing going on and if it gets too much I keep the warrens separate from the newbies.
    The two newbies Flo and Ro (Florence and Rosie) are plumper, happier and definitely healthier than when they first arrived but, they are still not laying. Could they be feeling stress from the pecking order situation?
    They get layers pellets morning and night, mostly offered as a mash with extras added for health and treats. Oyster shell is available and they free range in my garden. One of them does show signs of wanting to lay as she goes in to nest and I've heard her make laying noises but no egg. I was told they were both laying when they arrived but I'm not quick to trust the seller as I feel he was dishonest with me on another matter.

    Any suggestions, help, info? TIA
     
  2. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Assuming that you do not know their exact age I would say that yes, the seller didn't give you good information. They are most likely pullets "close" to lay. Have they done the "submissive squat" for you? When they do, that's when you know they are truly close to laying.

    Of my 4 girls, 2 have begun laying, and they all do the submissive squat. It just depends on when their little bodies decide "hey, it's time to start this egg-laying thing!" ..... best of luck to you, be patient, it'll happen.
     
  3. maeve27

    maeve27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 28, 2014
    One does the squat - the one that has been going up to the nest box and making laying sounds. I think they are going into moult.. I wasn't sure but I've just checked them and one is definitely losing feathers, lol. Thank you for your reassurance.
     
  4. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, it sounds like they're getting really close. Patience is not my virtue and I'd go out to the coop constantly seeing if there was that first egg in there...drove me nutso!! [​IMG] But lay she finally did, and soon yours will, too. As for molting, yes it is possible as the days are getting shorter and much cooler at night. Fall is the a-typical time for molting. If yours are make sure they are getting plenty of protein which helps in quicker reproduction of new feathers....have a great day!
     
  5. maeve27

    maeve27 Out Of The Brooder

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    I know that feeling, lol. One of my warrens went into the newbie nest box and laid an egg there.. trying to exert her dominance I guess. Or maybe she prefers their coop.
     
  6. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

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    When birds are under stress it often causes them to stop laying for a while. It can even cause them to go into molt, and they will not lay eggs until they are done if that has happened. I would not necessarily suspect that the seller was untruthful.

    When you first get new birds in it is best to completely isolate them from your previous birds for at least 3 weeks, with no contact between them, before allowing them to comingle. That way if they do have something catching you have a better chance of protecting your flock.
     
  7. maeve27

    maeve27 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 28, 2014
    That had been my intention - hence the quarantine coop and run. They have been kept apart for 10 days and I was free ranging the newbies to help them settle in and alleviate any stress. I really hope it is not an early moult brought on by stress. They have improved immensely since being here.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2014

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