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Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by smiley, Nov 3, 2010.
Is it true that hens stop laying after 2 years old?
I have several Key West hens that are older than 5 and still laying. Not everyday, but still enough to earn their keep!
No, it is not true. A lot of hatchery "production" type breeds will taper down dramatically after their first or second year, but a hen with good genes can continue to lay well past 5 years.
I have a very crusty old hybrid (Warren) who stills lays most days aged 4. The others which we had at the same time stopped laying after 2-3 years and three of them have died due to 'old age'
It seems to vary a lot even within the same breed.
An old show strain of attractive large fowl White Leghorns,hens from 9-12 years old are still laying a fair number of large sized eggs .What more can you ask for.
Heck, must get some Leghorns!
So my Golden Comet sex links, who were bred for laying eggs and lay eggs they do (and they started at a young age- 4 months), are going to peter out early?
Uh oh, b/c I'm the kind of person who plans to keep them til they die of old age even if they stop laying (there's not much meat on their little bones anyway)
Something tells me I may have a lot of "pension collecting" chickens around...
My Welsummer hen is three and half years old will be four in March, she lays me an egg almost every day, from the beginning of Feb to October. I am planning on keeping her as long she lives because that type of quality goes a long ways.
My four year old SSHB lays at least two doz eggs a YEAR but she is a pet. She is from show quality lines. That's OK for me and my DD! Otherwise if she was not one of our pets, she would have been culled out.
Hi! I had 2 old Barred Rock hens that were still laying an egg or so a week at 10+ and 11+ years-old. Not 'good layers' at that age, but when they laid the eggs were huge (I wish I could remember at what age they stopped laying well).
I thought those old girls would live forever, but they passed during a heat wave a few summers back.
I once gave away an entire flock of hens at 2 years old because they'd stopped laying and I thought they had reached that point..It wasn't until I joined BYC and became more familiar with the way of the chicken when I learned that they were actually in molt.
My 3 Buff Orpingtons are 2 years old now and I'm getting one egg a day from them. They're molting.