New hens.....any way to determine age and when they will start laying?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by undertheradar, Apr 8, 2009.

  1. undertheradar

    undertheradar Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 2, 2009
    We purchase two (not RIR) hens from a local feed store last saturday. The people running the place seemed a bit iffy on their ages, but thought they were about 5 months. One is slightly larger than the other. They seemed to have settled into their new home nicely...and are fed well and housed comfortably. So far we have not seen any eggs. Currently I'm treating them both with Duramycin-10 for a suspected case of Coryza, so I'm thinking that would keep them from laying? Maybe the stress of being moved s well.

    They are eating and drinking well, and are super friendly when we hang out in the backyard while they free range.

    Any ideas?


    Last edited: Apr 8, 2009
  2. smokeater413

    smokeater413 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2009
    NW Florida
    Are you sure they are rir's, I have a flock of 25 and they look nothing like my birds. The red color is correct but the white on them isn't, none of mine have any white on them.
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Are you sure they said rhode island reds, or could it have been "red sexlinks" which is exactly what they look like to me (I am no expert but cannot see how they could possibly be RIRs, whereas that coloring is common in some sexlinks)

    From the comb size it does not look like they have been laying for very long if at all, but should be about the age for it now.

    Look at the pic of my son with 3 ISA Brown pullets on my personal page (link at left) -- they were about 18-19 wks at the time, and of course they are a type of red sexlink. Does not look utterly unlike yours (I don't think yours are ISA Browns particularly, but look at the combs)

    Good luck, have fun, hope they're feeling better soon,

  4. animal nut

    animal nut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 11, 2008
    S. E Ohio
    These look just like my Hubbard Golden Comets combs and all. They started laying at 16 weeks of age. My comets combs are small like the ones you have maybe they just need time to ajust to your their new home. It took several days for the hens I purchased from a farmer to start laying again.
  5. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    They resemble my hens, too, and they were laying at 16 weeks 3 days. But if adjusting to change or illness, I would expect delays. Those birds look younger than 16 weeks to me.

    I'm using lay pellets and recently found that 1 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar in a gallon of their water is appreciated. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2009
  6. chickn

    chickn Away for a bit

    Apr 15, 2008
    New Hampshire
    they seem to be red stars/ sexlinks but they dont look sick to me, and when you change a birds home they sometimes stop laying for a bit, and if they are 5 months they should start laying soon. maybe they havent started laying yet.
  7. MammaHen

    MammaHen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2008
    Knysna, South Africa
    Either my supplier was having me on or your petshop was having you on, cause my RIR look nuthin like those ladies... hope your chix are feeling better soon x
  8. undertheradar

    undertheradar Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 2, 2009
    lol.....honestly I have ZERO experience with what the various breeds are supposed to look like. The kid that was grabbing them for us just mumbled something about "I'm pretty sure they're Rhode Island Reds." [​IMG]

    This was the same kid who when we said "we like that one" proceeded to chase her around and then say "you sure you don't want this one instead?" in reference to the one that wasn't trying to get away. [​IMG]

    Good to know they may just not be of age for laying yet. Like I said, they appear to be settled in quite nicely, so we'll just be patient.

    As for them not looking sick, those picture were taken right after I gave them a bath and cleaned up all the dried mucous on their nostrils. It sticnks to high heaven so thats why I think its Coryza.
  9. Iancurrannacearca

    Iancurrannacearca Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 27, 2009
    They are not RIR!!! I think they are hybrid layers!! They lay great eggs!!! and lots of them!!!
  10. Kim_NC

    Kim_NC Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 27, 2009
    Mt Airy, NC
    They're definitely not RIRs. They're a Red Sexlink. I agree they look young - might need another 4 -6 weeks to lay.

    Why do you suspect they have Coryza? They don't look to have symptoms for it in the pictures - typical signs are swollen or puffy head/face, watery eyes, sinus discharge.

    Coryza is a serious respiratory disease. I would get rid of any bird I thought had it. A bird infected with it becomes a carrier. It's easily spread to other birds in a flock. More info here:

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