When should I know that my hens are about to lay

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by clucker farms, Jun 27, 2016.

  1. clucker farms

    clucker farms Just Hatched

    Jun 20, 2016
    I am new to the chicken world and I don't know when to know that my chickens are about to lay. I am not sure how old they are because I got them after they were chicks. They are big now but I don't when they will lay
    1 person likes this.
  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Signs of getting ready to lay include a reddening of the comb and wattles, spending some time visiting the coop during the day and squatting in front of you when you approach. If you see these signs, you can be pretty sure that they will begin to lay fairly soon. At first, laying can be a bit of a hit and miss affair, until they get their plumbing sorted out, but that first egg is a great day!

    1 person likes this.
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    You can put a golf ball or two in the nest boxes, to show them where eggs should go. If you posted photos of them - head forward so we can see the comb, we probably could tell you if they are approaching point of lay.
  4. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
  5. Jenna14Chicken

    Jenna14Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2016

    X2 great advice
  6. jcishope

    jcishope New Egg

    Jun 27, 2016
    my leghorns are about 18-19 weeks and I was also looking for signs!! I saw one hanging out in the coop yesterday and kind of kept an eye on her. She looks good she was just chillin!! Hopefully this is her getting ready!!!
  7. clucker farms

    clucker farms Just Hatched

    Jun 20, 2016
    Ok. Thanks I will try to get a picture of their comb I am out of town right now so I can't get to them right now. Thank you for all of the answers
  8. write2caroline

    write2caroline Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 21, 2009
    Watching for eggs is a little bit like watching water boil.

    Different breeds lay at different times weeks for first eggs.

    You will know when you see the combs redden. They turn a bright cherry red. After the egg is past the point where it can be fertilized the combs turn a duller red and the chicken will most likely lay the egg the next day. If you have a rooster - you might catch the rooster breeding with the pullet when the comb is that color. That is the best indicator. The combs and wattles are not the same color all day. My chickens seemed to lay eggs around 10 in the morning too. When I was new to chicken keeping I would check all day periodically but later I learned about when they laid eggs and I would go pick them out just after. Once a chicken laid her egg into my hand. She was very friendly - other chickens didn't like me hanging around making them nervous. They will lay eventually.
  9. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    Welcome to BYC [​IMG] A good sign of a pullet approaching lay is the colour of her comb. If her comb turns a bright red colour she's ready. The reason for the colour change is to show the rooster that she is ready to start laying fertile eggs. Her pelvis will be wider and if you look at her vent it will be moist and pink.

    There is also a simple test you can do to check if your hen is laying/ready. Hold the hen firmly and turn her on her back. Put your fingers on her breast bone and work your way down to her vent area. You should feel 2 bones sticking up. These are her pelvic bones. If you can fit only 1 finger upright between her pelvic bones she's still roughly 4 weeks off laying, 1 and 1/2 fingers means she's a little closer, 2/3 weeks and 2 or more fingers means she's either close to or laying already.


    This hen is laying. I could fit 2 fingers comfortably between her pelvic bones and note the colour of her vent.
  10. clucker farms

    clucker farms Just Hatched

    Jun 20, 2016
    How do I post a picture on byc

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