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Newbie questions about behavior and egg laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by silverbk, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. silverbk

    silverbk Hatching

    Mar 31, 2012
    I am relatively new to chickens and this forum. I'm sure this has been covered but I just wanted to describe what is happening in my coop to prevent any major problems.

    I started with 7 leghorn hens that were purchased as adults locally (age unknown). They were getting along fine in the coop. I lost one hen due to what I believe was a backed up egg. This happened while we were away for the weekend. So we could not prevent it.

    I saw two leghorns (age unknown) on craigslist that were not getting along with the owner's reds, so I decided to buy them to replace the lost hen. They were introduced to the coop and they seem to be getting along fine with the other hens. There are here a few weeks. All hens look happy and healthy.

    One of the hens has a bald spot on her but due to being pecked by the reds the previous owner had.

    Now I am getting 7 eggs a day from 8 hens, so one has stopped laying or possibly hiding. I suspect that it is the hen with the bald butt.

    Could she be molting to replace those feathers? Should I intervene or just wait and see if she lays?

  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Well most chickens don't lay continuously. Really strong layers may lay for 6 or 7 days straight and then take a day off [eggs take 25+ hours to form, so individuals should lay a little later each day, until their day off]. So it's unrealistic to expect 8 eggs every day from 8 girls. Seven eggs a day makes sense....or 8 eggs one day, 6 eggs the next, etc. as each girl takes her day of rest...THAT is logical.
    As long as you see feather shafts coming through on the girl that's been plucked, there's really nothing you can do. I mean, you can bump up protein by mixing game bird feed or fish meal or something to maybe speed up the process. But there's really nothing else you can do....

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