wondering why my girls are not laying

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by phaatnsassy, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. phaatnsassy

    phaatnsassy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This started about the beginning of November. At first I figure out it was because of them molting. Now almost 2 months later still no eggs at all. I have checked on the site and see that egg laying slows down. But mine have stopped completely. Now I am not sure if this is just from the molting or could the fact I have had a raccoon getting in to the coop. It did get 2 of my girls and I figured it was because they got traumatized by this is why they are not laying any at all. Does anyone know?
     
  2. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Unless you provide supplemental lighting to supplement daylight to a point where they are getting approximately 14 hours of light per day, they will stop laying after their molt and not begin again until spring.

    If you are providing supplemental light, then perhaps it is the trauma, and it may take some time as well.

    I just let mine rest during the winter with no extra light. But, that's me...
     
  3. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd say it is a combination of stress from the attacks and the time of year. I had a terrible streak of attacks (most likely a fox) and I was losing two and three birds a week. Total losses added up to ten hens gone. To make matters worse, the rest of the girls halted their egg laying. Egg production can be affected by amount of daylight, temperature, stress, time of year, and several other things. As long as they are acting normal, I wouldn't worry. However, I would search the coop from top to bottom to see where the raccoon is getting in. They are clever little suckers, you know.
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Different chickens molt at different speeds. Fast molters dump a lot of feathers at one time and look really ragged, but they get over the molt in a month or two. Slow molters just lose a few feathers at a time and may take 5 months to finish a molt. You might not even know a slow-molter is going through a molt just by looking at them. You’ll just notice a few extra feathers laying around and they stop laying.

    Some hens will return to laying when they finish the molt, whether you add supplemental lighting or not. Some will wait until the days get longer. Some hens are better winter layers than others. They are all different.

    Stress can cause them to stop laying. That raccoon attack could do it or maybe the pecking order being shaken up because some chickens were removed from the flock could affect egg laying. Usually they get over that in a few days but that stress might cause a mini-molt that can stop them laying longer.

    There are several things that could cause them to stop laying. If they are going through a full molt, two months or longer is not unusual. But no, I don’t know for sure what is happening with your flock.
     
  5. MrsBachbach

    MrsBachbach Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Looks like you have Ameraucanas. Not at all unusual for them to stop laying after they molt and wait til spring. If you think about it, winter is a time when food is not plentiful and eggs require alot of protein from the hen. So, it is only natural for them to quit production. Light triggers a response in their bodies to start the laying cycle again, so as the other posters have said, add light (from a warm spectrum bulb) to trigger their bodies to start laying again if you want eggs. With all the new EE bulbs on the market, you now have to check what end of the light spectrum your bulb is if you are going to add it to your coop. For some reason, chickens don't respond to "cool" bulbs. Heaven help them (and us) if they happen to break one of those things in the coop. Talk about a mercury overdose.
     
  6. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    My Coop
    Ditto.
     

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