So close!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by PowellAnimals, Nov 10, 2015.

  1. PowellAnimals

    PowellAnimals Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have several 21 week old chickens - Dominiques, Polish, and Silkies. One of the Polish started squatting yesterday and I just heard one of the silkies singing the egg song! Unfortunately I didn't see an egg when I ran out into the coop. They free range so I figure I might have to go egg hunting later today. How close do you think we are? I am on my last few store bought eggs and I would love to show DH that the chickens are finally laying! I am very excited and yet impatient!
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    I predict Friday for the appearance of the first egg. [​IMG]
     
  3. PowellAnimals

    PowellAnimals Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It is Friday and still no eggs! I was so hopeful! However, they do free range. If they went outside, would they usually lay in places the flock visits or would one hen wander away somewhere to lay? I've been looking through all of their regular spots and don't see anything.
     
  4. blumenmadchen

    blumenmadchen Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm still waiting on two EEs who are 31 weeks (squatting, red combs). Good luck!
     
  5. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It still could take a week or two but dont stop looking you never know
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    You might want to keep them confined until laying commences to train them to lay in the coop nests.


    Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for 2-3 days can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. They can be confined to coop 24/7 for a few days to a week, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it. ..at least for a good while, then repeat as necessary.
     
  7. PowellAnimals

    PowellAnimals Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I should have taken Aart's suggestion. So far I have found two broken rubbery feeling white eggs in the middle of the lawn which makes me think the Polish is laying. I still have several younger pullets so everyone is on chick starter with oyster shells on the side. I will be keeping them in longer in the coop longer hoping that they start laying in the nests. Thank you for all of the advice!
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    You still can...the first month or so of laying can be pretty goofy..softshells are not at all unusual.

    Nothing wrong with starter and oyster shell on the side...if they are eating the oyster shell.

    Feeding

    My Feeding Notes: I like to feed a 'flock raiser' 20% protein crumble to all ages and genders, as non-layers(chicks, males and molting birds) do not need the extra calcium that is in layer feed and chicks and molters can use the extra protein. Makes life much simpler to store and distribute one type of chow that everyone can eat.

    The higher protein crumble also offsets the 8% protein scratch grains and other kitchen/garden scraps I like to offer. I adjust the amounts of other feeds to get the protein levels desired with varying situations.

    Calcium should be available at all times for the layers, I use oyster shell mixed with rinsed, dried, crushed chicken egg shells in a separate container.

    Animal protein (mealworms, a little cheese - beware the salt content, meat scraps) is provided during molting and if I see any feather eating.
     

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