Why arnt my chickens laying eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Bubbles08, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. Bubbles08

    Bubbles08 New Egg

    Sep 18, 2010
    I have 5 chickens that are about 2 years and 4 months old.I have recently been getting one egg a day from the same hen.The others will go into there nest,stay there for about 1 hour,act as if they have done an egg but nothing will be there.It can't because of molting since they finished that about 2 months ago.So whats wrong with them??
  2. kulangi

    kulangi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 8, 2010
    I admire your patience. If I was you, those hen would be gone long time ago. What kind of hens do you have?
  3. Sparklee

    Sparklee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 28, 2008
    Quote:It could be a bunch of different things, which you've probably already thought of since you've had chickens for a long time now.

    What breed? Some breeds do end up not laying very much after 2 years, maybe only 1-2 eggs a week during the warm months.

    Days have been getting shorter since around June 21. Shorter days (less light) let the hens know that it's not the best time to lay eggs and raise chicks. Some folks get a light in the roosting area and provide 16 hours (with a timer) with a 40-60W bulb or 24 hours with a 15W bulb. FWIW, some folks think it's abusive to force the chickens to lay.

    Cooler days and nights have their effect also. Feed intake will go toward keeping them warm instead of making eggs. However, if you're in Florida, this isn't the issue. If it's cooler outside, you can soak whole oats or wheat (about 1/2 cup) overnight and then bring to boil and then let cool to about 90 degrees (use thermometer) and feed in morning. Or feed them about 1/2 ounce per chicken of canned fish for a week or two to see if that snaps them out of the doldrums.

    Lack of protein in feed. 18% protein is good. Or a lack of proper feed that has a balance of magnesium, phosphorus, and calcium ... etc.

    Upheaval. A recent move. A recent predator attack. Lack of water. Unnoticeable illness.

    I'm sure there are other things I'm not remembering that also cause a drop in egg production.

    If you try the fish and lighting and you still aren't getting eggs a month from now ... well, I'd probably give up on them until spring and I'd be prepared to get some new hens because these chickens are reaching middle age. In fact, I'd be ordering some chicks from a hatchery right now so that I'd have some egg layers in 5 months (March).
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Sounds like they may be past laying age.

    Get more chickens.
  5. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Quote:Yup--if you really want eggs, you'll get rid of hens after their second moult. Oh they'll lay but it won't be worth the feed you put into them.

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