New to chickens and BYC....

Dixiegirl1

Hatching
6 Years
May 2, 2013
1
0
9
Hi, I am new to keeping chickens, as well as the BYC website....I got my girls, 4 of them, a month ago. The farmer said 3 of them had been laying for a few weeks, even told us what colors they were laying. The 4th is a baby and won't be laying for a couple more months. One of the 3 "layers" died a week ago, don't know why.
Their food and water are in their coop area. I started with crumble, have switched to layer feed 2 weeks ago. It's always full, I refill it when ever it gets low. I have a waterer, I fill it every 2 or 3 days, never empty. The 3 seemed very quiet after the 1 died, so I got 3 additional hens last weekend, atleast 2 of them are laying already. I thought maybe it was not enough of them, for them to chicken with. They have a grassy/leafy run and just started to free range this week. Their coop has light in it, stays on from 5am to 10pm. There are 2 nesting boxes. I am using pine mulch for nesting bedding as well as on the floor.
My question is, why have none of the original girls laid any eggs? I am very, very new at all of this and it just weighs heavily on me that 1 died, neither of the original girls have laid eggs, and I think now I'm over thinking everything. My husband feels as though they are younger than the farmer said, and had not actually laid yet. He had over 150 chickens, so I think it make sense that he didn't know for sure if they are actually laying?? They seem to be doing everything the new girls are doing, but they look smaller, and feel lighter than the others. I have also taken into consideration how much change they have had, and think this may be part of it, but why would the 2 new ones already be laying, but not the original 2??
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Any thoughts or suggestions would be great.
 

Kernel Cluck

Songster
7 Years
Feb 1, 2012
494
35
141
In front of wood stove keeping warm.
First.. welcome to BYC. It would seem that your hens are a bit younger than you thought. The other things to consider: a) How long have you had them? If it just a week or so, sometimes the stress of relocation can cause them to stop for a while. b) Do they have access to lots of fresh water? Eggs are 90% water and they will stop if they don't have LOTS of water. c) Do you provide calcium (oyster shell) I have heard that lack of calcium can cause them to stop laying or laying poor eggs.
I am not sure that giving them that much supplemental light will help. 5am to 10pm seems a bit much but that is off topic.
 

SobbaChickens

Songster
6 Years
Apr 24, 2013
642
51
128
Kansas
I'd say they are younger than you were told. You would search their typical adult weight and weigh them, that might give you an idea. If you've had them for a month then I'd think stress would not longer be an issue.

Welcome to the site!
Katie
 

rachmickmurphy

Chirping
6 Years
Sep 3, 2013
294
13
83
Lol I joined yesterday too however have had feathered friends for years yep had a fox prob changed the wire to mesh they would break their teeth trying to get in now n laid sheets of old roofing iron round the out side to stop the digging under. Mites are so common I have a quarantine space set out specially for new arrivals they stay in there for 8 weeks and all bedding ect from clean out is burned. Dont
 

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