Keeping Chickens For Egg Production
There is never any doubt that keeping chickens for their eggs is not only an enjoyable
endeavor, but also serves to provide owners with a lot of profit. If the idea of raising egg-laying hens has
entered your mind, a comprehensive plan that involves quality of feeding, proper environment, and stress management
should be undertaken to get the best results for egg production.
But before we proceed with a contingent plan, an introduction to the fundamental facts involving the laying of
eggs should be tackled. This can depend on a lot of factors.
When it comes to breeds, the leghorns start the earliest in laying eggs, which usually takes approximately 5
months, while the bantams and silkies start in about 8 months. Using this knowledge will help you prepare
accordingly before the eggs start pouring in. Take note that hens that have just started to lay eggs do so in
haphazard fashion, but will soon start to get their normal rhythm as the days go by. Commercial hens usually get
replaced after two years, but some owners, especially those who keep their hens as pets, collect eggs even from
those that have already reached the last stages of their lives. This won't pose a problem since hens are still very
capable of laying eggs even in their later years, albeit a lot slower, until it eventually stops.
There are specific reasons on why chickens suddenly stop laying eggs, and owners need to be aware of the signs
so that they will know when to act accordingly or when to let things take its natural course.
Molting is the process by which chickens shed their feathers so they can grow new ones. This normally happens
during the autumn/fall, and takes about a month. Once they've grown new feathers, egg production should start as
There comes a time in the cycle of a hen's life when it starts to stay in its nest box without moving much. This is
called brooding, which can cause your hen to stop laying eggs for some time. It takes about two to three weeks
before the hen can snap out of its "catatonia" and start laying eggs again.
It's been proven that the least stressed hens produce better eggs, and that stress affects the quantity of eggs a
chicken can produce. A favorable environment and constant companionship for your chickens can alleviate this
Chickens have an internal mechanism to keep themselves warm. This expends some energy, which is normally used for
the act of laying eggs. Be sure to set up a heat lamp in the coop during winter so that your chickens can have more
energy required to lay eggs. As was stated before, egg production starts to lessen as a chicken gets older, and
stops in its fifth year. If this happens, we should give the hens enough courtesy to deem them 'retired' and just
allow them the luxury of living out the rest of their years with their happy disposition in mind. Hey, after all
the eggs they've provided, it's the least we could do!