When will pullets begin laying eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by BantamMama13, Oct 21, 2013.

  1. BantamMama13

    BantamMama13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 19, 2013
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    I am sure this has been asked many times, but here goes. I have three pullets and two roosters all from the same hatching. The boys are crowing and coming into their maturity. My question is when should I expect my girls to start laying? They are the same size as my Mama hen, are there any signs to look for?
     
  2. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    It's going to depend on the breed and how much light they are getting. What kind of chickens, how old are they now, and how many hours of light are they getting each day?
     
  3. BantamMama13

    BantamMama13 Out Of The Brooder

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    They are a mix of Wyandotte bantams, I believe they are a spring hatch but not sure of the exact time. They have molted already, and they are getting around 12 hours of natural sunlight. I have had them since the beginning of August, and I've watched them grow big fast!
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2013
  4. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    We usually figure pullet age in weeks, so it's hard to give you a direct estimate since you don't know hatch date. Wyandottes usually begin laying around 22-25 weeks.

    Because they are getting declining light right now, that may delay their start of lay for a while, maybe even the whole winter, unfortunately. Here are a couple of articles on poultry lighting--whether or not you decide to supplement light is a personal choice.
    http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2011/09/supplemental-light-in-coop-why-how.html
    http://umaine.edu/publications/2227e/
     
  5. BantamMama13

    BantamMama13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for the links! I've considered doing lighting in their coop, but I have some chickens that sleep on top of their coop. Mama hen and Papa rule the coop, leaving the rest to roost on top! The girls are interested in my mature rooster, following him around and running to his side when he finds something good to eat! Doesn't a molt mean that they are ready to lay? I think they are in the right age range for laying, hatched either March or April.
     
  6. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    A moult in their first year doesn't mean much, since they moult several times that year. With pullets, it's all about age and day length. If I were you, I'd get those girls into the hen house and start increasing light 30 minutes each week until you're over 14 hours. Again, lighting is a personal choice (and a source of great debate here on BYC, which is why I'm being careful with my language!).

    If they hatched in March or April, however, then I would bet they already are laying somewhere. They're way past the age of the first egg, no matter what the breed. Is there any way that they're hiding their eggs from you?
     
  7. BantamMama13

    BantamMama13 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have looked in all the possible places that they could lay, so I don't think I've overlooked them. I recently got three more hens, they just started laying and they are a little smaller than the girls I have already. Should I lock the chickens into the coop at night? I've tried putting them into the coop and Mama hen has a fit, plus they all prefer to roost on top. Maybe put a light on the top of the coop?
     
  8. JLfarm

    JLfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have some buff Orpington pullets will be 28 weeks on October 30 and still no eggs and they can't be hiding them
     

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