Molting is a natural cause for hens to stop laying. Once a hen reaches one year of age, she will molt once a year for the rest of her life. This molting cycle enables the hen to replace her feathers each year, which enhances her health and ensures she is prepared for the winter months.
If your chickens are not eating the dietary requirements they need to lay eggs, the production will stop. If you know your girls are getting the right food and plenty of fresh water but your eggs have stopped flowing, the problem may be as simple as Brooding. A few extra items to pay attention too are: molting, disruptions to the flock, or old age.
Do chickens stop laying eggs?
Most chickens will stop laying eggs while molting. Molting typically occurs each year when sunlight hours are decreasing in the lead-up to winter. Chickens will spend anywhere between 8-16 weeks regrowing their feathers, and may not lay until after winter .
Why do chickens stop laying eggs suddenly?
It’s pretty natural for chickens to molt during different times of the year. First-time chicken keepers may not know this, but a laying hen requires plenty of time out in the sunshine, or it may fail to produce eggs. A couple more things to think about are stress, disease and discomfort, old age, improper diet, they could be broody, or parasites.
When we were reading we ran into the question “How old are chickens when they stop laying eggs?”.
Unfortunately, they usually don’t live longer than three years. Egg-laying typically drops off by the time they’re two years old. And then there are some breeds (usually the larger chicken breeds) that can take up to 39 weeks before they produce an egg.
What do you do when your chickens stop laying eggs?
Use roll-away nesting boxes. When a hen lays an egg in one of these boxes, the egg rolls out of the nesting box, and the hen can’t reach it. Place golf balls in the nests. In theory, the hens will tire of pecking at these faux eggs, which can help to break their habit of pecking actual eggs. Fill an eggshell with mustard, which chickens hate.
One option, especially if you have very few chickens, is to allow the older hen to contribute to the farm in other ways. Older hens are great bug catchers. Another option is to cook your chickens as meat chickens. The third option is to humanely dispose of a chicken.
How to know when your chickens will start laying eggs?
Signs Your Hen is Ready to Lay. Consider the Age of Your Chickens. Hens aren’t born ready to lay eggs from day one. How is your hen interacting with the rest of the flock? Some more ideas to think about are: look at the physical characteristics of your hen, she will start to explore the nesting area, your hens may be hungrier than normal, or your hen will begin to squat.