When exactly in the laying cycle should I remove my tom from the hens? When she lays the first egg or when? Also is early Feb too early to expect the hen to start setting and bring off a successful nest in N. Florida. I guess I am wondering when I should stop collecting the eggs for food and leave them in the hens nest? I raised 15 from poults and 7 ended up being toms. Seems like only one is doing the breeding though. The others are just strutting around or fighting working the pecking order out.