Spring Drop-off In Egg Production

jabowery

Chirping
9 Years
Oct 26, 2010
79
6
94
My Coop
I just had a drop off (50%) in egg production, its spring and I have recently installed 16 nesting boxes of this design. My lay-age hens are nearing 2 years old (I didn't start incubating until recently -- I have a batch that should start laying this coming month). However, this drop-off was sudden (over the course of a week or two at most). I know where these hens "hide" their eggs and they aren't there. Even so I've looked thoroughly and not found any new hiding places. I've not changed their diet.
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
May 3, 2009
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Did you keep lights on them throughout the winter in order to 'spur' production? If so, they may simply be taking a break.
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
May 3, 2009
102,368
231,060
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If you forced them to lay throughout the winter by adding lighting, it might very well have something to do with winter. Hens lay in cycles. After a certain period of time they stop laying to regenerate. Pushing them beyond as in battery houses is what hastens their burn out. It's basic chicken husbandry.
 
Last edited:

jabowery

Chirping
9 Years
Oct 26, 2010
79
6
94
My Coop
I see. Thanks. I did have a heat lamp (one of those red things) that was on a timer to keep them warm at night. They did produce eggs during the winter but only at about half the rate they did up until October of last year. They kept at it right into the middle of spring and then POOF a real drop off.

This morning I bought this bale of alfalfa from a farmer and put it next to their house.

They took to it like crazy at first but later on in the day they're pretty much ignoring it and back out in the field.


 

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