Out of ideas! - Still not laying!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by tiffanya, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. tiffanya

    tiffanya Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a mixed flock of birds, mixed breeds and 1.5 to 3 years old. They layed until mid summer and then all stopped! I haven't had a single egg for 2 months! Here are the things I've tried...

    changing feed
    increasing amount of feed
    cleaning out coop
    giving more oyster shells
    deworming
    electrolytes in water
    apple cider vinegar in water

    What am I forgetting!? Some have molted in the last month or two but hardly any have laid for nearly 4 months! I'm about ready to start butchering because we can't afford to feed a flock of 15 if we aren't getting any eggs.

    My ducks are more temperamental layers but they too have stopped laying.
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I suspect they are hiding the eggs somewhere, or else the eggs are being taken by predators. This could even include your own flock. Also, could a human be taking them? Any chance you could borrow a game camera? I do think I'd stop changing their feed and water. Electrolytes shouldn't be added for any length of time, anyway.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  3. tiffanya

    tiffanya Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They are nearly entirely in a run so would be no where to hide the eggs. I considered an egg eater, but that certainly doesn't explain why the ducks stopped laying also. On top of that, for about a month before they stopped laying all together I did have one hen lay off and on (I know it was the same one) and her egg was never eaten so... I haven't done a lot of changing of food, just went back to a type I had used in the past. Also have only added the electrolytes periodically (more when it was super hot this summer).
     
  4. Choco Maran

    Choco Maran Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They will stop laying in the winter due to lack of light. They require on average abou t 12 to 14 hours of light to lay. Try to add light in the coop during the night this may help. If they are going though a light molt this can last for several months.
     
  5. tiffanya

    tiffanya Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is it normal for the molt to last for 4 months and include all of the birds at the same time? I've not had this happem before. I usually add light to keep them laying during the winter a bit, but they stopped laying this year in July.
     
  6. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Older birds just don't lay all winter. Their bodies are designed to take a break. My older hens don't lay in the winter and start back in the spring. You can try a light to "fool" them into laying, but it doesn't work all the time. Their bodies just need a break. If you can't afford to feed them, you need to cull and start over with chicks or point of lay pullets.
     

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