If you have chickens and they suddenly stop laying eggs, it certainly is alarming. Of course, you ask yourself, “why are my chickens not laying eggs?” Let’s explore what interventions you can take to find a solution while ensuring the health of your chickens.
To ensure your chickens are laying the most nutritious eggs, make sure you are feeding them naturally sourced animal food. New Heritage Feed Co. provides naturally sourced food for your chickens. It also is unique in that it is fortified with essential oils to ensure health and vitality.
If you want your chickens to produce nutritious eggs, then feed your chickens the very best.
Sometimes you are doing all you can to care for your chickens, but they stop laying eggs. When and why do chickens stop laying eggs?
Why Are My Chickens Not Laying Eggs?
Chickens can stop laying eggs for many different reasons. Nutrition, light, stress, and age can all impact egg-laying. You cannot control some of the factors, while others you may be able to with minor changes.
If you are new to raising backyard chickens, you may be unaware that egg production changes during the winter months. As daylight hours become fewer and fewer, it isn’t uncommon to have fewer eggs in the coop.
Also, as a chicken keeper, be aware of what is typical for egg production. Under normal conditions, chickens will lay one egg every 24 hours. Sometimes hens will lay less based on daylight conditions. When there are more daylight hours again, they will produce more eggs.
You may also need to consider if your egg-laying hens are laying their eggs outside of the coop. Sometimes they hide their eggs. Sometimes solving the mystery takes a little hide-and-go-seek.
You might be wondering why your chickens aren’t laying eggs when you should actually wonder where they’re laying.
If you cannot find any eggs outside the coop, then the first factor to consider again is daylight.
Daylight is the most common reason for a decrease in egg production. Hens lay when they have at least 16 hours of daylight.
Supplemental light needs to be provided to ensure they will produce eggs if daylight hours are short. If they don’t have supplemental light, then they will stop laying eggs altogether.
If you are raising chickens and hens, you may give them a break from laying eggs during the winter months. The birds can begin laying eggs again in the spring when the daylight hours get longer again.
If you have your hens and chickens lay throughout the winter, be sure to provide them with proper artificial lighting. Keep it consistent with the recommended 16 hours of daylight, either natural or synthetic, to ensure egg-laying.
Chicken Health and Nutrition
Did you know that overfeeding can decrease egg production in chickens? It may be the cause of your chickens not laying eggs.
Some chicken keepers feed their chickens extra treats and scraps, which impacts egg production and chicken health.
Why is this so important? Adding treats or scraps to their nutritional food ends up diluting the nutrients in the food. When your chickens eat treats, they are not getting all of the benefits of their healthier food. This can then end up causing decreased egg production.
An essential nutrient that chickens need is calcium. Calcium is necessary for free-range chickens to lay nutritious eggs consistently.
Chicken keepers should ensure that the food they give their chickens has the proper amount of calcium. They also need to make sure they do not dilute the food.
The Environment of the Coop
The chicken coop can be a stressful environment for chickens. Stress can come from outside predators, overcrowding, temperature, or nutrition. It is crucial to monitor the coop consistently for stressors to keep chickens healthy.
What can you do to minimize stress in the chicken coop? There are a few steps that you can take:
- To keep predators out, keep wire around the coop and install metal screens for the doors and the windows.
- If the hens become aggressive, be sure to separate them from one another.
- Make sure the coop offers adequate spacing. Each bird should have at least 4 feet of indoor space and 5-10 feet of outdoor space in the coop.
- Provide nest boxes for the birds. There should be one nest box for every four hens. Be sure to keep the nest boxes clean and dry for the health of the chickens.
The temperature of the coop should be similar to the outdoor environment. Many chickens can tolerate cold winter temperatures, so the coop does not have to be much different from the outside.
Providing too much heat can harm the chickens. If it is cold outside, but you heat the coop to warm temperatures, the chickens cannot regulate their body temperature.
If your chickens aren’t laying, they may be too hot.
The Age of the Chicken or Hen
Naturally, if you are raising chickens, they will age. Chickens begin to lay eggs at an early age, usually at 18-20 weeks. The chicken will be able to lay eggs for their life span so long as they are healthy.
What is the average lifespan of chickens? On average, chickens live 8-10 years. They will still lay eggs as they age, but you might notice their egg production does slow down.
Older hens and chickens are valuable to have even if they have slowed or are no longer laying eggs. They can be companions and leaders to the other chickens at the farm.
What Animal Food Helps to Ensure Egg Production?
Your chickens need the right balance of vitamins and minerals to ensure egg production. Feeding them a healthy feed also ensures they will produce healthy eggs. New Heritage Feed Co. has organic, essential oil fortified animal food to give your chickens only the best.
We offer a chick starter feed to ensure chicks get the best start to lay nutritious eggs as they grow. Once they are mature, the organic all flock chicken layer provides the right nutrients for the rest of their lives.
Community, customers, and animals are the core of New Heritage Feed Co. We are here to partner with you to raise healthy, happy animals.