OK, this ain't new, but.......

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by cmike, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. cmike

    cmike New Egg

    Jan 20, 2012
    Hey egg eaters. We have a small flock of bantams, one OEG roo, one OEG hen, and two Mille Fleur hens. Back in September of 2011, we had 4 more pullets that were caged beside this flock, getting to know each other before being penned together. These four pullets had just started laying (we raised them from day-old chicks, also bantams) and had been penned beside the other birds for 2 months, so it was just about time to merge the flocks. Unfortunately, a varmit broke into the pullet cage one night, and killed all of my birds, leaving the older birds mainly because their run and cage was much sturdier, my fault for not using hardware cloth on the temporary pen. I've since solved the varmit problem rather aggressivley, won't go into details but God has some new animals in heaven :)
    At that time, ALL of the hens were laying daily, or at the very least every other day. But ever since "the massacre", I haven't gotten a single egg, going on 4 months. One hen is just over a year old, the others are just over two, so age shouldn't be the reason, they aren't molting, aren't broody (hell, ain't nothing to brood even if they were!) are well fed and watered, allowed the same amount of free range as before, pretty much everything is the same except the trauma of the loss. Any sugestions for restarting the layers?
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    If days are short where you are, you could try a small light on a timer to make their day 12 to 14 hours long. I've read here of an "old timey" remedy of adding a BUNCH of cayenne to the feed. Birds don't have receptors for capsaicin so at least it can't hurt anything but the wallet. Whether it would work, who knows? That kind of stressor will certainly cut off the egg supply, but like you, I would think it's been plenty long enough now. Is it possible that they are still feeling stressed by a predator, maybe a rat at night, something like that?

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