No egg laying in the winter..

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by guesswhokatysue, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. guesswhokatysue

    guesswhokatysue Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 11, 2013
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    So I have read on here and other sites that when the days grow shorter, it's not uncommon for the hens to stop laying. A solution to this problem was a light inside the coop, kept only bright enough so you could read, would help with this problem. Does anyone do this? Is it a smart move or should I let nature run her natural course? It's early, but winter can sort of happen awfully quick around here!
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    The days are already decreasing in hours of sunlight in the northern hemisphere. Have been since the peak on June 21. Soon, the daylight hours will begin to effect older birds. First year pullets don't react so soberly, but older hens may indeed stop laying and go into moult and take some time off to re-charge.

    The choice of creating the "endless summer" by using artificial lighting is a personal choice. Some folks do and some folks do not. Having a light on a timer, snap on at say 5 am and snap off at 8 am seems to provide the missing jump, should you decide to do so.
     
  3. guesswhokatysue

    guesswhokatysue Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you for that feedback! It's always sort of bittersweet as the days start to decrease. Ill have to look into it more, and see what I see :). Does it hurt them to have this endless summer?
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    That is the question and the debate is as endless as the aforementioned artificial summer. LOL
     
  5. guesswhokatysue

    guesswhokatysue Out Of The Brooder

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    Oh dear! I suppose ill really have to do some research and see what I come up with. This is way more complicated than I had originally thought. Thank you for sharing, hopefully I find the information that can lead me to the right answer :)
     
  6. Hayduke27

    Hayduke27 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Right. Some people say the artificial light causes their body to work harder through the winter than it normally would, and in the end, decreases the chicken's overall longevity. If you let your hens lay for a few years, then eat them, this won't really have much of an affect on you. Then again, if you are keeping the chickens as pets, and want them to lay for as many years as possible, it can be good to give them a break during the cold, dark months.

    Again, like guesswho said, it's pretty hotly debated.
     
  7. mpgo4th

    mpgo4th Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a flock of RSL and the first one started laying at 16 weeks! This "breed" is known for laying heavy for a few years and then they are spent. My plan is to not add any light to let them do what nature intended and slow down for the winter. Hopefully by doing this it will extend their laying life.
     
  8. guesswhokatysue

    guesswhokatysue Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 11, 2013
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    Ok, for my own clarification (since I'm so new to this whole thing) do chickens completely stop laying in the winter, or do they just slow down compared to the summer/spring months?
     
  9. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

     
  10. guesswhokatysue

    guesswhokatysue Out Of The Brooder

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    Wow I was not paying attention l. I guess that's what happens when I try to reply on my phone versus a computer. Thank you for the refresher :)
     

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