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Two questions about hens not laying?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by AtlantisPeeps, Jun 3, 2016.

  1. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So my hens are egg eaters. What I am going to do is hatch out a new flock to replace them. I have attempted to collect eggs from a few of the hens I want babies from, and have collected 2 of the 4 eggs so far. (Quite difficult to catch them before they eat them) Setting the eggs on Wednesday.

    The other two who I've have yet to collect from are a Speckled Sussex and a gorgeous EE.

    This is Atlantis, the EE. She is 2 1/2 years old. I haven't even seen a blue egg shell in about 2 months, maybe more. I REALLY want an egg from her, but I don't know what happened? They free range most days, so is it possible she's laying outside somewhere? Or just quit?
    [​IMG]

    This is Adrian, the SS. She is just 2. The past two days I've been stalking her to snatch an egg. I know she lays because I got one last week from her. She sits on the nest for a while, then gets up and walks away! I've closed her off in the house so she can have privacy and the other hens wouldn't eat it before I got to it.
    [​IMG]

    Is there anything I can do?
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2016
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Runs With Chickens Premium Member

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    Are you hens dubbed? Egg eating can be from not enough protein or calcium in the diet. What are you feeding them? A ration of 18-20% protein with oyster shells offered in a separate bowl can help, as well as adding ceramic eggs to the nests and making sure you hens can't see into the nest easily. Floor nests often get raided and eaten.

    Many EE are sporadic layer, stopping and starting throughout the season. If you manage to hatch out some replacements you will need to figure out why they are egg eaters or risk it happening again.
     
  3. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Roll out nests are great for that.
    Get some fake eggs, either wooden or ceramic. If they can't break them, they may give up.
    Even plastic Easter eggs filled with sand can work.
     
  4. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our chickens eat layer pellets, occasionally with oyster shells. They also get lots of watermelon, potatoes, corn and other scraps. Plus what they find out free ranging in te woods.

    The nest boxes are on the floor, yes.

    We tried putting mustered and hot sauce in empty eggs, but apparently they like it. We have tried running out in the morning to get the eggs before they eat them, hanging black curtains, everything! This flock is just too far gone I think.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2016
  5. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    And no, they are not dubbed. (Dubbing refers to removing combs and wattles, correct?)
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Runs With Chickens Premium Member

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    Switch from a layer to a higher protein feed, like an all flock or non medicated grower. All the extras they eat are diluting their total daily protein down, and 16% is the bare minimum they should eat in a day to support laying.

    Add some higher protein treats like cottage cheese or scrambled eggs. Than move your nestboxes off the floor 2-3 feet is a more appropriate height, so they can't just look in and see an egg. That combined with ceramic or wooden eggs that can't be broken might fix your problems.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Runs With Chickens Premium Member

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    Yes dubbing is removing the combs and wattles, your EE and Sussex looks like it has no comb, both appear than to be out of lay than. A laying hen will have a bright red enlarged comb.
     
  8. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Runs With Chickens Premium Member

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    I think you are dealing with a deficiency, perhaps trying a different brand of food might help as well as changing they type of food. I don't think you will get any eggs out of those two hen unfortunately.
     
  9. AtlantisPeeps

    AtlantisPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you!

    And those pictures are from when they were about 6 weeks old. I don't have good updated pics! Lol
     
  10. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Runs With Chickens Premium Member

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    Well now I feel dumb. That explains the combs. [​IMG]
     

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