When do free range chickens stop laying for the season?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by JuliaRoseD, Oct 15, 2015.

  1. JuliaRoseD

    JuliaRoseD Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 28, 2015
    I have 6 hens in their first laying season. I've been getting about 4 eggs every day for the last few months until two days ago when I haven't found any. My birds are 100% free range so it's possible, they moved their nest on me. It is common for everyone to stop laying at the same time and this early in the season? Am I being naïve and need to just put on my hiking boots and find their new nest?
  2. tdepointe

    tdepointe Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 17, 2015
    Brooklyn, Connecticut
    Most likely your birds are laying some ware else, they more likely than not would not stop laying altogether for the winter they would just slow down and not all would lay the same days.

    Other thinks that could cause them to stop laying would be molt.
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs I Wanna Be A Cowboy Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    Some hens depending on breeds will lay for a bit than stop, starting again a few weeks later and quitting again, my past EE, were like that, free ranging birds lay less than confined because of the calories used to run around, and some newer layer can take a couple of months to get into a steady rhythm.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    I'd confine them for a few days to see if they are laying and to habituate them to laying in the coop nests again.
    First year birds might slow but probably won't stop laying and they won't molt for another year.

    Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for 2-3 days can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. They can be confined to coop 24/7 for a few days to a week, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it. ..at least for a good while, then repeat as necessary.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by