Should I even bother with additional light?

DianeB

Songster
12 Years
Mar 12, 2009
733
116
244
I have two hybrids and one New Hamshire Red or RIR (I am leaning towards NH Red). I decided not to give them extra light this winter so they can take a break. The only on that seems to be doing this is my non-hybrid. She stopped laying as soon as daylight hours dipped below 12 hrs. The other two did slow down for about a month, but now are starting up again since our heat way broke. (It went from near 100 for 3 weeks to around 80 this week.)

I know they are hybrids, but will they ever slow down or stop laying this winter? I would like them to have a break. If not, should I even bother giving my red extra light?

Thanks
DB
 

hinkjc

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
Jan 11, 2007
12,683
125
331
PA
Regardless of if they lay through winter or not, they don't need the light. First year layers will often continue to lay right through winter (unless they go into a moult). It is the 2nd year ones that typically shut down completely, altho not all will. I think you're fine. I like to give my girls a break too, so they can generate new plumage and let their egg system rest for a while. Some will take the break and some won't.
 

DianeB

Songster
12 Years
Mar 12, 2009
733
116
244
They are all first year layers and seem to be going through a slow molt. Their feathers are getting long and unkempt lately - they use to have such nice plumage. I am finding feathers here and there. No tail or wing feathers yet.

Is it the breed difference that causes only one to stop laying?

DB
 
Last edited:

Mojo Chick'n

Empress of Chickenville
11 Years
Mar 8, 2008
5,261
17
261
Republic of Chickenville
I have been considering the break also. Last year I added extra light, but egg sales are down, anyway, right now and I can't eat all those eggs (some of my girls are second year layers) so I figure to just let the natural light go for them. If they lay, great - if not, great also.

I do turn on the light during the daytime inside the coop - so they can see better
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but extra light besides daytime hours I won't be doing.

it has been getting dark, here, about 6:30 ish (central time) so when I close them in the coop at night I just turn out the lights. Last year I left the lights on until about 9 or so, then went out to turn them off.

about half of the girls are going through a heavy molt this fall, so I figure they could use the rest and a break from laying anyway.

but then, I have enough layers that even if only half of them continue to lay all winter, I'll still have plenty of eggs.

meri
 

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