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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by 4-H chicken mom, Oct 18, 2007.
Don't think it was the cantelope. Too many other factors involved. Longer days, molt, fair, etc.
I know what chicken mom is talking about. Not to be rude but fair was two months ago people, it is not stress from the fair!! Not all the birds went to the fair anyway. And they are not all molting either so its not that. Trust me, i never in a million years would have believed the whole fruit thing but something is keeping these birds from laying and thats the only thing i can even begin to come up with because these birds have never had canteloupe or grapes. There is a light on in the coop that comes on in the mornings but still no eggs. In all my years of having chickens i have never had birds quit laying for months because of the weather, so i highly doubt its that either.
Is anyone else having this problem because its driving me crazy. It makes me cry to actually have to buy grocery store eggs, yick.
Quote:In all honesty and due respect...I would take the advice from an experienced chicken farmer over a book. I give fruit and veggies and not seen a decrease, in fact I am actually seeing an increase since my chickens are now 27 weeks. That is very interesting but I personally do not believe it to be true. But I do agree that something is causing this.
Are you sure something or someone is not stealing the eggs? Rats and snakes will take the eggs and not leave any sign they were there. Chicken pen next to the woods + no eggs = snake or rat to me.
I had an idea to test my theory of yesterday about snakes, rats or people taking the eggs. Try putting an egg in one of the nests and see if it stays there a day or two.
I feed my girls all kinds of fruits and never had a decrease of eggs.....
I dont always go by the book faithfully.....most chicken people I know of would give you advises and you can just follow it to try it out or go with your gut instinct or just talk to more chicken folks. As for the Meyer's suggestion not feeding them fruits....I think its hogwash.
I can see a large grape might lodge in a chick's throat but other than that, just go with the gut instinct. We have been feeding our chickens leftovers in teh old days .....
Folks, you have got this all wrong. I do not go by any book. I have given my chickens fruit for 15 yrs. I just said maybe there was something to the no fruit thing that Meyer Hatchery states in their catalog, which I didn't even know was there until someone posted they saw it. They have their reasons for saying this and they stick by it. But it was the first time my chickens ever had cantalopes. Light was not an issue 2 months ago. We feed Purina's Layena with some scratch grain we throw them with grit while outside in the pen. There water is changed every over day and they are not molting. I had an e-mail that suggested maybe one of the chickens brought home something from the fair, which is, entirely possible but as I told him, if it is I wouldn't know where to start because they all act fine. Not all the chickens went to the fair, and they were laying while we were gone, but the day we got home they were all given the cantalopes as a treat and two days later all the hens stopped laying including the pullet that started laying at the fair for 5 days before coming home. This is the strangest thing I have ever seen. My chickens have laid eggs every day all through the winter without missing a beat. I guess only time will tell. My husband threatened them they would be in a giant pot of stew if he has to wait much longer for eggs. I told him, that we need to give them some more time just it case it was something we did. Wish me luck, or them luck!!!!
Oh, my dear, we do wish you all the luck in the world. I think we were all just grasping at straws trying to find a solution for you. If you have given them fruit in the past but not cantelope...then maybe it was something in that particular cantelope? Who knows? How are they doing now? I find when I "threaten" the chickens they straighten right up.
Good luck, everybody's gotta do what they gotta do for their flocks as each one is different and will inevitably have different dynamics. No golden rules or hard facts you must adhere to. If it's the fruit, then it's the fruit. Only you know what they did and thus you make the calls on your needs.
I do not think it is the fruit. I give my chickens fruit and they eat old watermellons left in the garden when I allow them to free range. I believe it is the amount of protein they are receiving in their diet. Eggs are protein and it takes a lot of energy and protein for a hen to produce an egg. Do you give your hens feed? Try 18% laying crumbles or pelletts. I have silkies who are not known to be the best layers but mine are fairly prolific if they are not molting and the weather is not extreme. Good luck!