Laying hens

waterrat

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we got our first one today. Boy is excited to have it for breakfast:tu
 

WHUP ! Hen

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I wouldn’t try and hurry them, they will lay when it’s time. Are they a ”light breed” such as Leghorn or heavy breed” like a White Rock. Leghorns tend to lay earlier than heavy breeds do. The later they start laying the longer they will lay. When they start I would move to a 20% ration rather than 16% ration they are on now. My Dad had a 4,000 head breeder flock that the eggs went hatcheries. I helped taking care of them in junior and senior HS. He had White Rocks which are a very gentle birds. Leghorns can be flighty as hell.
 
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WHUP ! Hen

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View attachment 350849 we got our first one today. Boy is excited to have it for breakfast:tu

Ah, brown eggs, they must be a heavy breed. That isn’t too unusual to find pullet eggs no the floor when they first start laying, they don’t know where to go, you do have nests I hope. After 60 years of fooling with chickens I still love to be around them, I had pets in every pen that Dad had that and they would seek me out whenever I was in their pen. I would pick them up and love them and they enjoyed the attention.
As time goes by some maybe will quit laying or some reason. If you notice their feet and beaks turn yellow instead of a light tan or light yellow they are not laying. Pick them up and grab her by the wings and just below her anus there are 2 bones if you can’t get the first three fingers of your hand between the bones they aren’t laying, that means that there isn’t enough room for the egg to pass, those are eating chickens. After 60 years I still love chickens and take every chance I get to be around them.
 

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I judged laying hens in FFA in high school. I learned a lot about them and their anatomy. They are heavy brown hens. Not exactly sure what breed, as I bought them at the farm store. It's four days in a row she's laid now. I'll be able to have an omelet pretty soon.:tu I do have nice laying boxes, but she hasn't learned to use them yet. I'm thinking of putting them closer to the ground, but high enough to keep the snakes out.
 

WHUP ! Hen

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i don’t think they are pure bred but have a lot of Rhode Island Red in them. Our lowest nests were about 30 inches high. If they are too low hens will fight for them. You will notice that each hen has her own nest she uses. I see they are eating scratch grain, a good snack but the should be on a 20% layer ration, too much scratch grain and they will get too fat. Got oyster shell and grit out for them ? BTW they are beautiful birds.
 

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