Why aren't my chickens laying??

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Bigg Red, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. Bigg Red

    Bigg Red Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 8, 2009
    I have several chickens (22 to be exact) that are all at laying ages but I am only getting 2 maybe 3 eggs a day. I was told that maybe I was stressing them out to much by adding more chickens so I have stopped and its been several weeks that they have been together. I know at least 5 to seven have laid but getting them to lay at once (per day) is impossible. I have a large run, big coop, 6 nests and they seem happy and healthy. What am I doing wrong??? Please help.
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    First, welcome to the forum. Glad you are here.

    You mention they are laying age and some have laid. Telling us actual age might help. I have 20 pullets 23 weeks old and am getting between between 1 to 3 eggs a day. They are inconsistent at a young age and some are slow to start up.

    You don't mention where you are. I'd suggest putting your location in your profile as that could help on many questions. There are people from all over the world on this forum. Right now, parts of my advice to someone in Australia with this question would be different than to someone in Osh Kosh, Wisconsin.

    Many things can cause a reduction in egg laying. Some are natural and some can be an indication of problems. I'll give a couple of links that discusses it some. They are from University/extension sites so they should carry more weight than anything I say.

    Virginia Tech – Stopped Laying
    http://pubs.ext.vt.edu/2902/2902-1097/2902-1097.pdf

    Florida – Stopped Laying
    http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/PS029

    Stress can cause them to not lay. This stress could come from about anything. Adding to or taking away chickens from the flock, relocating them or changing their coop and run, them running out of water, a predator attack, turning lights on and off at night, extreme heat, the list goes on. For some, they get over stress quickly but some can take weeks.

    A big one in the northern hemisphere this time of year is molting. This is the one I'd suspect the most for you if you are in the northern hemisphere. As days get shorter, the chickens go into molt. While they are molting, many stop producing eggs and the others cut way back.

    Not related to molt, as the days get shorter, egg production drops. This is somewhat breed dependent as certain breeds lay better in the winter than others, both from cold and light conditions. The experts say you need 14 hours of light a day for peak production, but I think it may be related more to a decrease in daylight hours than the actual length.

    It can be disease or parasites. Check the links above.

    Occasionally, for no apparent reason, some chickens seem to take a break from egg laying and rest. I suspect it might actually be from some stress that the owners don't know about, but I have seen it reported on here.

    Poor nutrition could effect egglaying.

    That's all I can think of on the spur of the moment. Those links could have more.

    Again, welcome to the forum.
     
  3. Shiningfeather

    Shiningfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 7, 2009
    hill country texas
  4. Bigg Red

    Bigg Red Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 8, 2009
    I live in Washington State which i am sure you know is known for colder wet weather. But being that summer is just know over we have had good weather allowing the chickens to spend more time outside. most of my chickens are 8 months old. Some are a few younger and older but whom ever i bought them from did not know the exact age. I can not seem to figure this out. As far as dease I suppose thats a possiblity but wouldn't there be any other symtoms?
     

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