Young hen not laying and acting odd

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by easunshine, Oct 29, 2013.

  1. easunshine

    easunshine Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 16, 2013
    Our 7 month old Dominique has stopped laying. She was laying daily and then she just didn't lay anymore. This was 2-3 weeks ago. She's also been acting different. She has always been really friendly and eager to sit with us and have us hold and pet her. Since the egg laying stopped, she's also become more skittish, and won't let us touch her without a fuss, though when we do pick her up, she's quite content to be held and loved on.

    I would attribute the less daylight to the egg production stopping, but is the behavior change normal? I have been told that at 7 months it's unlikely she's molting.

    Thanks
     
  2. ChirpyChicks1

    ChirpyChicks1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 22, 2013
    Sounds a bit like what I'm dealing with with one of my pullets. She's the same age too, 29wks old tomorrow. She's always been the lowest on the pecking order except for a few weeks when she first started laying, she was my first and only for a few weeks. Now she's back to the bottom and over the past month has basically stopped laying. She's been a bit more skittish around the other chickens, won't even eat treats with them anymore and scares at any sudden movements. When I'm around she tries to stay close to me and follows me around, makes little "purring" noises too I guess you could say.

    I just made a post about her on this section actually, my concern with her is her behavior with the nesting boxes. it's like she's not understanding why she isn't laying eggs. She's not broody, she doesn't sit on the nests all day but she just seems confused.

    Good luck, I hope we both receive some good advice!
     
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Is she eating? Have you checked her for lice/mites? Normal poop? Anything else that seems odd?

    I've heard of coccidiosis sometimes happening in birds that age. Does she look puffed up?
     
  4. easunshine

    easunshine Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 16, 2013
    She looks normal, eats normal, still hangs out with the other birds like usual. She'll eat treats from our hand like always and will come up to us, so long as we don't try to touch her or anything. I checked her but didn't see anything on her. She has lost a lot of feathers from her underside - I see them around the yard and pen and coop. The tiny fluffy feathers.
     
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    You are describing how birds act when they molt. She could be going through a very minor molt.
     
  6. easunshine

    easunshine Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 16, 2013
    Thanks! It seems to be early for her to molt, just from everything I've been told and read. But I did think it seemed like she had the symptoms.
     
  7. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    It is early, and it won't be a heavy molt if she is molting. I've had some 9 month old pullets molt before - usually just a few feathers and their tail are replaced.
     

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