No eggs and I think a mice problem.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by beana1225, Dec 29, 2008.

  1. beana1225

    beana1225 Out Of The Brooder

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    O.k. here goes. I have a bantam rooster/hen pair that I know are over a year old. (cause I've had em that long.) And a rooster/2 hen set of buffs orp. that I got in March/april. They started laying somewhere in may/june and laid off and on somewhat thru the summer. I don't think anyone has laid an egg since august. Even my bantam who was the best out of all of these crazy chickens I have. Pardon me if I am wrong. But don't chickens lay eggs?????????? I mean, I know the answer to "which came first" is up in the air. But I was under the impression that chickens laid eggs. Please help me. Also, there are little holes popping up everywhere in the ground and I have noticed little brown dropping all over the inside of the coop. I know that it is mice. But what do I do that will not hurt my non laying chickens.

    Thanks to any help.
     
  2. smith2

    smith2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Why chickens don't lay is definitely a mystery. However, with holes in the ground I would be looking at egg eating predators. Some rodents love eggs. You need to deal with the mice. There are several possible ways to control rodents, you might want to look into what might work best for you. You can use the search function on this forum and type in rodent control to get some information from us posters. You didn't say where you are at, but that might have something to do them not laying. You also might want to check for parasites, increase carbs in the diet, increase the light, etc. Just some things to think about.
     
  3. chickenpiedpiper

    chickenpiedpiper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I cant believe a mouse would survive in a chicken coop! My hens are phenomenal mousers! I only know cause my cats are too, and my hens have learned to intercept the cats as they try and bring thier prizes indoors! (the hens chase em to the cat door, and they drop the mice) any living mice are given immediate chase! I feel bad and try to intervene, but since the hens have figured it out, I havent been able to save one! They are quick! (besides, now my cats arent bringing live mice into my house anymore! thank god!)

    But I imagine, at night, while the birds are sleeping, that might be another story..... I would examine what you are feeding, and your lighting situation. Also, are the birds eating the eggs? We had a brief problem with that, a few marble eggs from my collection ended that behavior.

    Good Luck!
     
  4. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chicken coops attract mice! All that feed, nice warm & dry shelters - now, that must be heaven for a mouse.

    I buy the cheap traps at Lowes and set them. Thru the Fall, I caught 4 mice in the garage where the feed is stored and 3 mice in the coop, itself. Wear gloves when you handle the mouse and trap. For a week now, the traps have sat baited with tasty raisins dipped in peanut butter - nothing.

    I was a little surprised to find the mice in the garage and just sat a trap beside the feed out of curiosity. Not only is there no evidence that they are getting in the feed but there are other things that they could be eating in there with no sign that they are eating any of it. Evidence that they were in the coop occurred when one nearly climbed in my face as I stuck my head in the door late one evening to check on the hens.

    The trap in the coop is actually behind a cage door, so the birds can't get at it. I doubt that it would do any harm to them but it won't accomplish what is intended if the hens are stealing the raisins or cheese, or bacon (peanut butter is a nice condiment for all 3 [​IMG]).

    No poisons - a poisoned mouse may be pretty easy for a chicken to catch.

    Yes, it would help to know where you are to give us some ideas about the not-laying issue. Besides, I don't like to even think about nice, fresh eggs and rodents at the same time.

    Steve
    edited to ask: what are you feeding your chickens?
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2008
  5. Chickenfortress

    Chickenfortress Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Heres a quick and easy mouse trap that can't cause chicken troubles. Get a recycle bin. The type with 4 or 6 holes in the bottom. Tape cards over all of the holes but one. On that hole, place a card with tape on only one side of the card, like a hinge. The mice will probe the holes when they smell the bait, and the card will move easily, allowing entrance. After they get in, it will fall back in place and hide the exit. You can do this with all of the holes, so they are all entrances, but you increase the likelihood of one of your critters figuring out how the trap works. Place a bit of peanutbuttered bread in the trap, and cover the top of the bin with plastic wrap. The plastic wrap part is important since you want them to be able to see out. If they can't see out the top, they tend to look down a bit more, and some may get out. You will still catch some, but maybe not all. They can jump out if the top isn't covered. You may not think they can't jump that high, but they can. They look like little brown popcorns popping when you approach. I think the sound of mice in the trap scrabbling about adds a sense of urgency to any outside that smell the peanutbutter, because you never catch just one. The last step, is to place the bin on some small blocks to get it about an inch off the ground.
     
  6. davidb

    davidb Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hey thats a good idea, cool trap
     
  7. beana1225

    beana1225 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 5, 2008
    Jackson
    O.k. I am in Jackson, Georgia. That is about 45 mins south of Atlanta. It is suppose to be 68 degrees today and has been since Christmas. It is so warm here all of my bulbs are blooming. I need some cold temps.

    Thanks for all the advise. I know they are mice. I haven't seen them. But I have seen enough droppings to know what they are. I hope I don't get face to face with one. I look up all the time looking for them crawling around. They are apparently running a muck at night. I saw my rooster chasing something one day and I am sure it was that but it only happened once. The problem started when my buff rooster was being mean to my bantam roo. He wouldn't go out in the yard. So I was feeding him on one of the boards inside the coop. Food left out. Mouse problem began. That has been taken care of and they are still there.

    They are not getting the eggs. Chickens or mice. There are no eggs. There has been no evidence at all of any broken eggs. And the hens are never in the boxes. They are just not laying eggs.

    I think this is all the answers. I will check and answer any question I missed.
     
  8. digitS'

    digitS' Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Decreasing hours of light suppresses egg production altho' you are at a latitude where they are getting a lot of light even at this time of year. Still, it has been decreasing but that's all been changed [​IMG]. You may want to hurry it along for the hens by adding an hour or 2 of lights in the coop.

    Protein at above 14% in their diet is required for daily eggs. With the warmth in Georgia, you may be in danger of diluting the protein with excess carbs. It wouldn't take much and they aren't needing many calories with 68 degree temps.

    Are they free-ranging so might there be hidden nests in the yard?

    Beyond lights, activity, and feed - there are old remedies to encourage laying . . .

    Steve
     
  9. n2h20

    n2h20 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i too have a mouse problem. i saw about 4 or 5 in the coop the other night,, they dont come out during the day, only at night, i have set traps but they steal the bait and dont set the trap?? what the heck? any other ideas on traps?

    i was thinking of a 4" section of pipe,,, in the "walkway" with both ends open. when i go out at night, close one end and scare them away from the coop,,, hopefully they will run and go through the pipe and i just simply pick up the pipe with the bottom capped off. save for morning and protein time for the chicks??

    think this will work??
     
  10. beana1225

    beana1225 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 5, 2008
    Jackson
    I am going to try the recycle bin idea. I think that one will work. Just keep using it til they are all gone.
     

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