Questions about laying behaviors

jahphotogal

Chirping
7 Years
May 15, 2012
242
4
83
CT
My 28 week old Golden-laced Wyandottes just started laying 2 days ago. So far we've gotten 3 eggs - 1 the first day, 2 the second day, nothing yet today. The Columbian Wyandotte isn't laying at as far as I can tell but is just about ready - same age, squatting, red combs, etc. Our 2 EE's are a few weeks younger so haven't started yet - maybe another few weeks.

I was surprised and delighted that they realized the orange bucket in the coop was for laying, and that they fit inside, as Wyandottes are very large. But not only can they get in, they can turn around. (But if two try to get in at once, it might be dicey!)

So I was surprised at a couple of things. One is that they sit in the bucket for a long time before they lay - 20 minutes at least. Do they learn to lay more quickly, or is that about normal? And just now, one of them sat in the bucket for a good long time, and then came out without having laid anything. I know she is laying - she laid the first egg (I think - I saw her in there, left for a while, then came back and found the egg.) Normal? Will she go in again today to try? Or was that it for today and we have to wait til tomorrow.

The eggs are quite small (normal length but quite narrow), a lovely pinky-brown, very hard thick shells, brilliant orange yolks, and DELICIOUS - we scrambled the first three this morning and all shared them. I've never had a better egg! (And they better be good - by my calculation they have cost us $150 per egg! LOL)
 

jahphotogal

Chirping
7 Years
May 15, 2012
242
4
83
CT
Bump: is it normal to sit in the nesting box for 20-30 minutes before laying? And is it normal to lay one day, and on the next day go into the nesting box but not lay?
 

nakstk

Songster
8 Years
Sep 19, 2011
801
33
128
Kalama, Washington
Bump: is it normal to sit in the nesting box for 20-30 minutes before laying? And is it normal to lay one day, and on the next day go into the nesting box but not lay?

For new layers yes and yes. It takes 25 hours for an egg to form and be laid. New layers systems are not used to this egg laying thing yet. So they will sit in the nest box because that's what their body is telling them to do. Once they have been laying for a month or so they and their body will get into more of a rhythm. My Welsummers just started laying the Oct 12th and they will lay then skip a day or 3 then lay again then skip 2 days and lay again. On the days they skip they will still go sit in the nest box and sing the egg song but don't lay and egg. Their first pullet egg was very tiny only 1.4 ounce. Now not even a month later their eggs are 1.9 ounces.

 

Happy Chooks

Free Ranging
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Jul 9, 2009
40,417
3,566
626
Northern CA
My Coop
My Coop
Yes, it is normal. I have some hens that will lay in there for an hour. Sometimes they just want to rest before or after laying an egg.

And the eggs will get bigger over time. Congrats!
 

jahphotogal

Chirping
7 Years
May 15, 2012
242
4
83
CT
Thanks! We got our fourth egg today - a bit hard to tell which one is laying, or if they're alternating. When I came outside around 1pm, one of them was in the box, but when I started raking noisily, she left the box - no egg. Pretty soon I hope to get 2-3 a day from the Wyandottes, and in a few more weeks, the EE's should start. It's so interesting to watch them as they grow!
 

donrae

Hopelessly Addicted
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Jun 18, 2010
31,453
4,088
581
Southern Oregon
My young layers just like to hang out in the nest areas. They're in and out of there a lot, sometimes they lay, sometimes they don't.
 

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