What am I doing wrong?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Laura Rojas, Feb 27, 2014.

  1. Laura Rojas

    Laura Rojas Out Of The Brooder

    10
    0
    24
    Feb 27, 2014
    I have one Leghorn, and a Wyandotte with a BRIGHT red comb (the Wyandotte also crows - and yes, she's a hen). Both tip the scales at about 11 pounds. They are very calm and placid (pets, really).

    I have been feeding them Layena, which is a layer crumble, and it "claims" I don't need to add anything to it... but that doesn't feel right... no grit, or oyster shells?

    They are roughly 17 - 18 weeks old. What can I do (if anything), to speed them along?
     
  2. smarsh

    smarsh Chillin' With My Peeps

    741
    29
    164
    Aug 19, 2009
    lexington, KY
    I would love to see a pic of your crowing hen. I suspect she is not. sorry. I would also like to see a pic of your 11 pound leghorn, has to be a record.
    17 weeks old is not very old, be patient. If the comb is red eggs aren't too far behind.
     
  3. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,723
    2,687
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    A few topics to discuss.
    Layena is a complete ration and no additional things are needed. It contains about 4% calcium for birds actively laying. The grain ingredients are ground so no grit is needed.
    That said, grit is still a good idea. It makes the gizzard larger and insures even the smaller grain orts will be better processed.
    Once they start laying, oyster shell is a good idea since the larger particles are better for building shells.
    Those two things should be in a separate container.

    How long have they been on the layer feed? One shouldn't begin layer feed until they actually start laying because 4% calcium is too high for non laying birds.

    I don't try to speed things along since the older they are when they begin laying, the better their bodies can handle the process.
    As days get longer, laying usually starts much sooner than birds at POL in fall and winter.

    ETA
    Leghorns are usually only about 4 1/2 pounds and Wyandottes about 6 so there's something wrong there. If they're 11 lbs. individually, perhaps the Leghorn is a Minorca and they're both boys.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2014
  4. Laura Rojas

    Laura Rojas Out Of The Brooder

    10
    0
    24
    Feb 27, 2014
    Barbara promptly crows at 5:00 a.m. and then around 4:00 p.m. - without fail. [​IMG]

    this is Barbara...
     
  5. Laura Rojas

    Laura Rojas Out Of The Brooder

    10
    0
    24
    Feb 27, 2014
    [​IMG]
    This is Colleen.... with Barbara behind her. To be fair, these are "mass produced" chickens, and were overages from a chicken house so I am guessing at the breeds. I had another hen, like Barbara, named Giggles - who met with an accident - she never crowed, but was a 13 pound roaster at Christmas time.
     
  6. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,723
    2,687
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    I Imagine you thought Barbara was a silver laced Wyandotte but is probably a Barred Rock or Dominique. Could you post a picture of her/his wings and tail? It's usually only older hens that try to crow. I've never had a pullet do so.
    Colleen isn't a leghorn but probably a Cornish Rock cross so she could be very big.

    How long have they been on layer feed?
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2014
  7. Laura Rojas

    Laura Rojas Out Of The Brooder

    10
    0
    24
    Feb 27, 2014
    Yes, I will try to get Barbara's wings and tail. She was only between 6-8 weeks old when we got her. She was VERY small. We kept them on chick feed for about 6 weeks, maybe a little more, then switched over to the Layena about 3 weeks ago (their chart on the bag said they would start laying at 16-17 weeks (I know that's wishful thinking). She has just started crowing within the past week... and isn't any older than Colleen...
     
  8. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,723
    2,687
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Yeah wishful thinking. Some lay as early as 15 weeks but most start between 20 and 25 weeks.

    That crow tells me boy. If any curvature in the tail feathers or pointy wing, hackle, tail feathers, it's a boy.

    ETA

    That's just like the Johnny Cash song - 'A boy named sue'.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2014
  9. Laura Rojas

    Laura Rojas Out Of The Brooder

    10
    0
    24
    Feb 27, 2014
    there isn't any curvature.... I've been around poultry... and this isn't a boy... it's a hen... maybe it's a crossed sex-link..... [​IMG]I have no idea... I'll take a couple snaps of Barbara's (or maybe Barbarino's) extremities....
     
  10. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,723
    2,687
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Well then I believe you.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by