I was planning on using the rest of the grower feed before introducing layer feed so I was astonished when I found an egg at less than 14 weeks. The pullet is a black star and my research has suggested the earliest egg should be found around 16 weeks. I got the first egg yesterday and the second today. The eggshells are thick and perfectly shaped though they are are small weighing only 1.1 oz and 1.2 oz. I know other people who purchased black stars from the same store that are now over 6 months old and have not yet laid. One person I spoke to believed it was due to a lack of lighting because he had been providing layer feed. I have a neighbor with bantams that laid small (I mean like robin egg small) and thin eggs until they were given layer feed. My question is, does layer feed make that much of a difference or is lighting more important. My girls have a red bulb heat lamp on all night and enjoy 60 degree nights. They also receive cabbage and spinach often along with pieces of apples or other fruits sparingly. They also get 1/4 cup (between four birds) of scratch/mealworms on Sundays. They are required to perform tricks like peck a certain face card or maneuver through obstacles to receive the special treats. Is it possible that she has received enough nutrition from the veggies and treats to lay good eggs? I feel like she is laying early because she is happy and has plenty of light. I also think I just have a "star." My red star is nearly a week older than her and has not started laying yet. Does the heat lamp make up for the lack of layer feed? After I found the first egg I scuttled to the feed store and bought oyster shells and layer feed and began offering both immediately. They also always had grit. I don't know if that adds any nutrition for egg laying. As far as happiness, she is my main lap chick and eagerly does her tricks. Any ideas on why this bird is able to lay thick eggs despite the lack of layer feed? Is it possible lighting makes that much of a difference? Does her treat selection or veggies play a role?