stop laying without freeranging?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by RoyalHillsLLC, Jul 31, 2008.

  1. RoyalHillsLLC

    RoyalHillsLLC Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    NW Louisiana-Vivian
    I am wondering if it is coincidence or real that the last several times I have had to leave the birds (ducks and chickens and geese) in the pen all day and not been home to let them freerange that egg production stopped. I figured it's related to being 100 degrees every day also, but they definitely lay some when they are out roaming around, but haven't been when penned up.
  2. Jenski

    Jenski Songster

    Jun 17, 2008
    Middle Tennessee
    I wonder if they're hotter when they are penned ~ when they free range they can seek out all sorts of cool spots to hang out in during the heat of the day. ? Maybe ? Heat stress could certainly be a factor with regard to egg laying.
  3. pkeeler

    pkeeler Songster

    Jul 20, 2008
    Could it be that being locked up with the eggs they did lay, led them to eat them?
  4. RoyalHillsLLC

    RoyalHillsLLC Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    NW Louisiana-Vivian
    I doubt they ate them. I would see evidence of that behavior at other times, I would think. I am speculating maybe it's related to a combination of heat and social stress, being couped up with a lot of newer birds. I am trying to plan ahead for our family vacation in a week. I think I will try moving some of them to my "grower pen" to reduce the number of birds in the big pen and also try to find some more shade to increase the amount of shade for them. I worry though about putting up too much tarps, etc because of blocking what little wind we have also. I would think the sirflow is also important on these 100 degree days.
    I let them freerange yesterday and collected 8 eggs after zero the day before in the pen. The trend definitely continues.
  5. AllChookUp

    AllChookUp Will Shut Up for Chocolate

    May 7, 2008
    Frozen Lake, MN
    My guess is also that they didn't suddenly develop an appetite for eggs, but more that they stopped laying due to the heat.
  6. bigzio

    bigzio Crowing

    Jan 20, 2007
    Stress really puts a damper on egg production....things like hot weather, crowding, not enough fresh water could be culprits, along with the fact that birds absolutely love their freedom and makes them happier and healthier reason to set then free during light hours when you can keep an eye on them.

    When my pen door opens to the freedom of free ranging, they all run out for green grass and bugs....just what the doctor ordered.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: