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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Mountain Sunshine, Aug 25, 2010.
Our hens have stopped laying for the past few days...have no idea why????
How old are they? Could they be entering a molt?
How many are there? Could they be broody?
Has it become suddenly very hot where you live?
Has their feed changed?
Probably the heat!
We have 6 girls that are laying. The food has not changed and they are just a little over a year old. Up until a few days ago we had eggs from everyone. Now...we have no eggs.
They do free range during the day and I have searched for eggs in other places, but the places they stay...there are no eggs!
It may be the heat, but they were laying when it was 100 degrees a few ago.
None of them have gone broody.
Here is what we have
2 lt brahma's
1 Cuckoo Maran
Not laying yet....(they are still young)
2 butter cups
I learned recently that chickens have a 9 month mini-molt. For me, their 9-month birthday coincided with the advent of the strong summer temperatures here. My egg production all but ended. I was getting 2 eggs a day from 20 or so hens.
I did a lot of reading and asking questions, but the best i could come up with is that combination of heat and minimolt. I started adding a small amount of calf manna to their feed - to replace nutrients they might be losing - and soon my production was back to normal. I don't know for sure, but that seemed to work for me.
Quote:Makes sense...I will get some of the calf manna and see if that works! Thank you!
vinegar in water DE in food and parasite check is due now.
Quote:I have been doing the vinegar in the water (love it) & I haven't seen any signs of parasites. If I don't see them in the poo then how do you tell?
Here are three links that might help you. It is a common problem.
Virginia Tech Stopped Laying
Florida Stopped Laying
Missing eggs thread
My first thought on this is that they are hiding a nest or two on you. Usually not all of them would, just a few, and you have checked that.
My next thought is that you have something eating the eggs. It could be an egg eating hen or a predator. I butchered an egg eating hen yesterday so I know this can happen. Hopefully she was the only one, but she may have taught others to eat eggs too. I'll find out in a few days. She was not eating all the eggs, just a few. I've had a snake eating eggs. It would come about every three days during the day, eat what it could, then go digest them. It did not take all eggs every day. For them all to disappear every day, the predator I'd look for is something bigger, especially a dog or a human. It is possible it is a raccoon, possom, cat, skunk, rats, something like that, even in the middle of the day, and the chickens are cleaning up any shells or other evidence left, but that doesn't sound like it would consistently be every egg every day.
The heat or a molt could cause it, though this would usually be a big slowdown, not a total stop. So could disease. Many different possibilities. Hopefully those links will help. You know your circumstances and may see something that we would not see.
Good luck! This one can be difficult.