Chickens...greenspun.com : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread
One good chicken question deserves another one!! My hens aren't laying either and they have a good diet and living conditions. EXCEPT.. An older gentleman around here told me to stop feeding them so much cracked corn because it will "burn 'em up". I don't really know what that means and I didn't want to ask him and seem even dumber! Also, my hubby put a heatlamp in their house for the really cold nights, and the coop has a low watt light on for about 10 hrs a day. Is that enough light and what is meant by burning them up? Thank you!!
-- Kathy (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 04, 2001
I am not exactly positive, but I think he means that the quick carb release from the corn would make the hens too hot and then it would affect their metabolism and slow down egg laying.
That is surely enough light to have them lay.
-- Doreen (email@example.com), November 04, 2001.
Are you giving them layer ration as well? If so, I really don't think they need anything else, and if not, most birds will not lay well without it.
-- mary (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 04, 2001.
I never heard that corn would burn 'em up... will have to ask around... but if it makes you feel any better, my hens stopped laying too, and I'm not sure why. Well, let me rephrase that. My Silkies are still laying an egg or two a day (for 7 hens!), and between 3 Rhode Island Reds, 2 Dominiques, 3 Aracunya (sp?), and 3 black pullets I'm down to an egg a week it seems. Thought maybe I developed an egg eater, and split the hens up into 2 different pens this morning to see what happens. Haven't changed their diet any either, so that shouldn't be a factor (21% laying pellets free choice, 1 cup of cracked corn every morning, oyster shell free choice, and whatever I can scrounge up to feed 'em - bread, veggie scraps, etc.).
-- Eric in TN (email@example.com), November 05, 2001.
My White Rocks and Golden Comets are spittin out some eggs now!! Course, they are just coming to maturity, so, that may have something to do with it. My older hens have slowed down some.
-- Uncle Jake (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 07, 2001.
My 4 hens (Rhode Island red and Light Sussex Cross) were each egg a day girls until about October, when they slowed and then stopped. As the days are getting longer we've started getting one egg a day. This should pick up as days get even longer. These girls are about 12 months old now, and I would expect them to lay really well (bar the winter moulting period) for another year. I think this type of hybrid hen tends to wear itself out after about two years of laying. How old are your hens and what variety are they?
-- Kathryn (email@example.com), January 23, 2002.