Why would a chicken suddenly stop laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Katz5617, Mar 30, 2015.

  1. Katz5617

    Katz5617 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have three hens that are 10 months old. They have all been laying and suddenly, the cochin just stopped laying. The other two are continuing to lay. The weather has been beautiful. She is getting plenty of sun. She is not molting. She's eating well. I supplement their feed with vitamins. They have all been wormed. They get plenty of calcium and protein and I use a layer crumble - I have oyster shell in the run with them. Her comb and waddle are nice and red, eyes shiny. She doesn't have the appearance of being sick or out of sorts in any way - but she has not laid an egg for six days now and she was laying at least four per week. They get plenty of protein and I give them greens each day. Do they go through a down period? Is this something I should worry about? Anything special I should be doing for her?
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Cochins aren't the best layers in the world. Perhaps she's getting ready to go broody.
    I wouldn't worry too much.
    Don't over exaggeratee the calcium especially if they aren't laying. It does nothing to stimulate ovulation. An egg shell (which is what the calcium is for) can't be built until there is ovulation.
     
  3. Katz5617

    Katz5617 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is it okay to just leave the oyster shell out - I have it in a dish for them to get as they want it. The other two are continuing to lay. I hadn't thought about being broody. I'm afraid the Buff is trying to go broody. I've been having to make her get off the eggs each day. She wants to sit on them.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Do you free range...might she be laying out there somewhere?
     
  5. Katz5617

    Katz5617 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No to free range. They are in a chicken run that is attached to the coop. She has always laid in one certain nest box, but even so I searched all around the run to see if maybe she had laid elsewhere. It's now been eight days and she has not laid an egg. I can tell her eggs from the others. The BO has a very large, very dark shelled egg, the BR has a medium dark egg that is more round than oval and the Cochin has an egg that is such a light brown that it could almost pass for a white egg - just a hint of color and her egg is smaller than the other two. I had read that Cochin's were not the best layer, but she averaged four eggs a week and on a good week she would lay 5. When she stopped laying it was suddenly. She doesn't appear to be in any distress. She is eating, getting about, her comb and waddle are healthy shades and she has a healthy looking poo. She is not molting - her feathers are intact and nice and shiny and her eyes - bright and alert. I give them vitamin supplements. They are fed every day from a commercial layer crumble and since they are in a run and don't have grass, I also provide them greens from the garden to go along with their food. When I give them treats - they are protein. I chop up turkey, give them earth worms that I dig from the flower beds and dried meal worms. I keep them dusted for mites or any type insect infestation. Someone mentioned being broody. She's a young hen so she should be in her laying prime. It was just such a sudden stop. It had me worried that I might not be doing something right. I have had so much fun with the girls - they all have such distinct personalities - they are more pets than producers. As to free ranging, I would love to be able to do that, but we have a large dog and while he no longer pays the original lot any attention, I have no illusions to if I let them out he would probably go after them. I have six new babies in another pen that my husband has built and those new ones are driving him to distraction. I stopped him from attempting to dig in to them the first week. We've had them four weeks now and he no longer tries to dig in, but they have his complete attention and I might add not in a great way. I think their fast and sudden movements have him fascinated, much like he is with a squirrel and it doesn't typically end well for the squirrels.
     

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