I have mostly processed excess young roos but recently culled some hens. One was a healthy young hen but she was culled for good reason and when I processed her she had an egg ready to be laid and evidence of many future eggs. I remembered when my grandmother stewed up a hen the yolks of various sizes were there. I purchased welsummers at different times from a gentleman who got hatchery birds originally and these were second or third generation later. One hen became fatter than the others, looked healthy and never laid. She was definitely not a roo. When I culled her there was nothing inside that looked like she had any potential for laying. She was over a year old and otherwise healthy. Several months later a sister hen went thru a molt and she began to look frail, lost weight but showed no signs of illness. Pretty sure she wasn't laying but not certain. I felt like it was the molt and tried to make sure she had extra protein but expected her to pull out of it however she died. She was about 1 1/2 years old. I did not autopsy her but visual external inspection showed no problems and she was re growing feathers. That left 3 of the hens, and because I lost some to predators I am not sure of the age but they were within 6 months if not the same age as the above hens. My egg production for wellies was way down. It soon became obvious 2 were molting, then they started the weight loss, etc. The other looked fine and kept laying. I decided to cull these two. There was no sign of illness but the ovary area had grey eggs, no yellow at all. Is this common in hens that are going to resume laying??? These hens were less than 2 years old and were not early or prolific layers. I do know that the previous owner fed mostly corn in the winter and game food during rest of year when he wanted them to lay. They had limited free ranging. I feed them game feed initially with scatch daily and limited free range. Later I switched to laying pellets because they weren't laying well which helped. My chickens now free range over a large yard and wooded area. The last hen seems to be fine. They were never without supplemental calcium once laying.