New Hens won't lay

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Linlou, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. Linlou

    Linlou Out Of The Brooder

    33
    6
    24
    Aug 9, 2013
    Rural Weld County, CO
    We bought 6 red hens which are supposed to lay large brown eggs. We brought them home a week ago and put them in with our 3 five month old Wyandotte Lace roosters. We also have two Siklie chicks that are about two and a half months old and four guineas that were hatched 6-12-13. The hens were supposed to be good layers but so far we haven't seen any eggs. We kept them cooped up for about 3 days and then turned them out. I have watched them and if I hear one cackle I go and check it out but no eggs. Does anyone know how long it takes hens to start laying after they have been moved to a new home? They were the only chickens at their last home. Could that be part of the problem?
     
  2. AlienChick

    AlienChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,918
    91
    211
    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    Sometimes it takes as long as a month before they feel comfortable enough to start laying again.
    Give them some private nestboxes and make sure they're not being bullied.
    Also, treats help! Scratch grains!
    Good luck! [​IMG]
     
  3. Linlou

    Linlou Out Of The Brooder

    33
    6
    24
    Aug 9, 2013
    Rural Weld County, CO
    Thanks for the information. We have never had chickens before so this is a new one on us. As far as them being bullied - well they are bigger than any of the others and I have seen them put the roosters in their place. [​IMG] They get along very well with the Silks and the Guineas and they follow us around like 6 little dogs. From what I have read on this site they must be Red Sex Links. They are wonderful chickens. I am glad to know that it will just take a little time for them to adjust. Thanks again!
     
  4. Linlou

    Linlou Out Of The Brooder

    33
    6
    24
    Aug 9, 2013
    Rural Weld County, CO
    Yeaaaa!!! Got our first egg yesterday and then one today! Looks like they are finally adjusting to be at our house. I am hoping since they are only 13-14 months old that we will soon be getting more than one a day.[​IMG]
     
  5. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,234
    110
    201
    Jan 16, 2012
    Texas
    You don't need 3 roosters, but you probably already know that. The roosters may fight with each other. And 5-month-old Wyandotte roosters should be bigger than your hens. Are you sure the roosters are 5 months old?

    Your hens are just getting used to their new home. Any major change can cause hens to stop laying eggs.

    You will probably be getting a lot more eggs next week.

    One other thing to keep in mind is that chickens usually go through their first adult molt (replacement of feathers) at around 16 to18 months. The molt most often happens in late summer or early fall. Egg production goes way down during this time because most of the protein intake is used to make new feathers. The molting process lasts about 2 months.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2013
  6. Linlou

    Linlou Out Of The Brooder

    33
    6
    24
    Aug 9, 2013
    Rural Weld County, CO
    Ya, I know we don't need three roosters but so far they all get along really good. In fact they are always together. They have (at least two of them) have figured out what their job is and are very active now. I did see one do his job and then the hen turned around and chased him off. It was actually kinda funny! I can only guess at their age. We bought them at a auction on May 12th of this year. They were fully feathered but not showing their sex yet. We have a dog that managed to kill several of them before I got the rest of the family convinced to chain her up when the chickens are out, so we no longer have any Wyandotte hens. Just RSLs. However two of the roos are now larger than the hens and the third one is growing fast. Guess we will keep all three as long as they don't get mean or start fighting with one another.

    It took about three weeks before the hens started laying and now we get 3 to 5 eggs a day. The hens are very friendly and seem to be well adjusted to our place now. They do like to act like bullys to my Silkies but I think that will stop when the Silks get a little bigger. And at least one of RSLs looks like she may be starting to molt. Looks like she is getting some loose feathers on her breast. How many times a year do they molt?

    We also have three guineas in the mix. Had four but a VERY large hawk decided to make dinner out of one while sitting on top of one of our dog houses. If I had a shotgun I would have probably shot that hawk but at least I know what happened to the fourth guinea. These birds seem to get along with all of the chickens so far. Hopefully it will stay that way.

    Thanks for the information. I really appreciate it.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by