My primary breed is Rhode Island Reds and they became 5 months old on Sept 24th. At about that time I began seeing my first pullet eggs, but very few have started laying, unless they have a very good hidding place (and believe me I've looked). I have not used Layers Pellets, although I did in the past. I felt that I could keep them alive with a little grain and force them to clean my garden and bee yard of weeds and grass and weed seed as well as bugs and that could provide me with free chicken food and also supplement with table scraps. In other words, I have very cheap chickens. They look a nice size and very healthy, but I know I have sacrificed eggs due to my decisions. Still I think that the egg production should improve soon. Would anyone know what to expect from Rhode Island hens that aren't overly encouraged to produce eggs, but allowed free-range, for the most part?