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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by rbruno, Nov 18, 2015.

  1. rbruno

    rbruno Out Of The Brooder

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    May 6, 2015
    Ok, I have my 4 pullets that around 22 weeks old and no eggs yet. They have access to all the feed they want thanks to the great bucket feeder design that I read about on this forum and constant fresh water. I have my row of X-Mas lights strung up on a timer that gets them 14 hrs of daylight. I have a milk crate turned on it side with hay and a golf ball and small pan that is about the size of the a milk crate just shallower also filled with hay and a golf ball. They are in my feed room in my barn so it gets plenty of air circulation. I have been feeding them kale, broccoli leaves, and a few collard leaves from my fall garden as well as random worms, crickets, grasshoppers, etc that I can find and give to them. They free ranged for a couple hours last weekend, but that is about all they have been outside. I have noticed in the last couple days they have gotten a little more flighty in the coop. The want to flutter around all over the place. No aggressive behavior towards each other or anything, they just seem a little more agitated. I understand they mature at different points and you can't pinpoint when they will start to lay, but is there anything I am missing or might do differently to get them started? Or, is nature just going to take its course.
    Rob
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Probably just nature taking its course.
    The breed I have normally start at about 22-24 weeks. Some of them took 30 weeks this year to start and a few younger ones still haven't started.
    All your other management is fine.
    The way to get them to start on a schedule is to do as commercial egg housed do it. They keep them on 8 hours light till about 15 weeks and then slowly increment day length until at about 14 hours.
    The stimulus is more increasing day length than just a certain amount of light. More accurately, it is a gradual change between light/dark cycle.

    Have their combs and wattles grown and turned bright red?
    If so, you can check to see if laying is imminent by observing the distance between the points on the pelvic bones. 2 fingers or greater distance means they are ready to lay.

    If they still don't seem ready, lose the light and then add 15 minutes of light per day and with your current management you will likely get eggs in a week or two.
     
  3. rbruno

    rbruno Out Of The Brooder

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    May 6, 2015
    I went home last night and looked closely at their combs and they are more of a pink color and certainly not bright or vibrant red. I guess my are still just a little young.
    Thanks,
    Rob
     
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Pullets that begin to mature in the fall take longer to start laying. The good news is that it's only another 5 weeks till winter solstice, and then the days will naturally begin to lengthen.
     
  5. mymilliefleur

    mymilliefleur Keeper of the Flock

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    Most pullets start laying at around 24 weeks, but may take longer especially this time a year, when the daylight is still waning. Be patient and give them some more time, they will start laying eventually. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2015
  6. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    24 weeks
     
  7. mymilliefleur

    mymilliefleur Keeper of the Flock

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    [​IMG]Correct, thanks for bring that to my attention, I edited it. [​IMG]
     
  8. jeffsmith13

    jeffsmith13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 2 Houdans , an Orloff , an Olive egger, and a Blr Wyandotte that all turned 24 weeks this week . No eggs from anyone yet but Im really anxious. My Bielefelders took 7 months but it was worth the wait
     

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