Pullets stopped laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by rsarns, Sep 26, 2011.

  1. rsarns

    rsarns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2011
    I posted a week ago about this, a friend was watching my chickens for me while I was gone, came back and they had ran out of food for 1 day, guess he thought he would feed them every 2 or 3 days. They all were fine looking and didn't go too crazy when I gave them food. I know they were not out of food in the feeder long as there was still lots on the floor where they had pushed it out. However, I had 2 of the 13 pullets laying an egg a day before I left. They layed consistently 1 egg each while I was gone, and another (I know it was another as it was a white egg) layed one. These pullets are all 23 weeks old now, but have not layed again in over a week now. I have 6 others that are 20 weeks and look like they should lay any day. We have had a significant change in weather here, from 70's to 50's for the most part. Is it normal for pullets to lay for a couple of weeks and then take a break? If so, how long does this normally last. The 2 who were laying are both BSL's and the white egg came from one of my White Leghorns. Appreciate any info, they are spoiled by the way with treats, and scraps, there are no pest problems... personally inspected every bird... not that they liked that too much!
     
  2. rsarns

    rsarns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2011
    Well 2 of my leghorns layed first thing this morning. Still nothing from the others who had been laying before. I have been reading the threads about chickens eating eggs, that causes me to wonder. However, I make 4-5 trips a day out with the chickens... maybe more [​IMG]... never seen any evidence of it. I do have 2 RIR's that are acting really whacky and squawking a lot. They have been checking out the nest boxes also. So hopefully they are all about to start or re-start doing their part!
     
  3. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    It's normal for young ones to take breaks.
    Nutrition, water, light and disease/parasites dictate production.
    Spoiling with treats is not necessarily providing the best nutrition for maximum egg production.
     
  4. rsarns

    rsarns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2011
    I am going to cut the treats out for a few days, also cut out the scratch I give them everyday (should I cut that too?). I make sure they get pleanty of grass and clover also during the day, should I stop that or is it ok? I keep the feeders full of layer and flock raiser mix (50/50). The eggs I have gotten are all nice shells. Thanks for the advice.
     
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    IMO, it's the scratch that really cuts into the nutrition. It also depends on what the treats are. I don't think fruits, veggies and meat scraps are so bad but anything that's grain or seed related is going to cut down on protein
    They'll eat all the scratch you can give them completely avoiding the layer feed.

    There are exceptions like quinoa, flax, sesame, agrotriticum(cross between wheat and wheatgrass), BOSS, amaranth but none of which will you find in scratch. Scratch is a mixture of what the mill has that's cheapest at the time they mix it.
     
  6. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Unless I missed it, you didn't speak about whether you give them some added light? The decrease in daylight, now less than 12 hours, now that autumn has arrived in the northern hemisphere, has a strong effect. Also, this lessening of the daylight also causes many chickens to moult, which may not be apparent, as in feathers strewn everywhere, just a general ragged appearance.
     
  7. rsarns

    rsarns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They are all young, 23 weeks or less, so I don't think it is molting, and they don't appear to be losing feathers. I am adding a light to the coop this week, to come on around 4:30 AM and go off after sunrise.
     
  8. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    I added light to my first flock that was 23 weeks this time of year and after 1 week got my first egg, 1 week later the whole flock laid the same day.
     
  9. rsarns

    rsarns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2011
    Much better today so far! 2 leghorns layed again, and found a small brown egg in the coop... not in a nesting box though. Not sure which hen layed it, but its a start!
     
  10. rsarns

    rsarns Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2011
    Woooohoooo six eggs today! 2 frm my leghorns, and 4 brown eggs. Not sure which of the pullets decided it was time except for my unknown black pullet, she was supposed to be a langshan but doesn't really look like one, she was in the nest box sitting when I left this morning. Of course there was 1 white egg, and 3 brown eggs in that box when we got home. The other brown one was on the coop floor, and the other white one was in another box. 6 nest boxes but they are only using 2. Now if I could figure out who my coop floor layer was so I could have a discussion with her about using a nest box.
     

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