"Production Hens" not producing


11 Years
Oct 21, 2008
Garland, Texas
This is my first year and I'm still learning. I was enjoying 5 to 7 eggs per day and all of a sudden the production dropped to one or two a day. I cut out the watermelon treats and even eliminated the hens scratch feed. I added a light at night to keep them up a couple of hours. I added vitamins to their water.

What else can I do?

Should I turn on the light at 4 AM?

The strange thing is, all 7 layed an eggs the day after I processed an old hen.

Please help, my wife is ready to process them all.
How old are your girls? Typically they don't go through their first adult molt until they are about 18 months old but they also molt several times as they are growing into adulthood. I believe the length of time a bird molts will vary for each bird, some are supper fast and others may take the normal time of 2 to 4 months.
It could be a slow moult- mine are coming out of their now. I gave mine extra light from 5 am -8 am. Adding some wild bird suet or flock block will help them in feathercoat development- this is a normal time of year for moulting and you may note an increased intake in feed, too. Mine are production reds, hatched May 15, 2008.
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I have Rhode Island Reds, Leghorns, and some others that are 9 months old and half of them haven't even starting laying yet!!!!! And the ones that have started, STOPPED for about a month, then started again a couple weeks ago, and have stopped again. SOOO frustrating!!
I plan to get a timer for their light. I just hate to get up that early. My hens are all about a year old, and there are just a few feathers lost, so I'm just not sure they are moulting yet. Since I'm in this for the eggs, I will add the hen scratch to their diet and continue with the vitamins in their water. I also cut back on the calcium because their eggs were so solid you could drop them ten inches from the counter and they wouldn't break.

I think the best cure for the reduced eggs due to moulting is to have hens of a different age. This would envolve culling and buying more chicks. I just hate feeding them for 0 weeks before they lay.

Is moulting seasonal?

Any other suggestions?
Up your protien to 18 or 20%. That will kick start them again. If you can not find layer at that level try some dry cat food as a add in to their layer feed now.

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