For a farmer expecting more eggs, it’s not out of place to wonder when your chickens will start laying eggs regularly.
If that’s your thought right now, then this article holds all you need to know about that subject.
Also, you will find answers to other questions about chicken eggs that bother you.
In our article, how many eggs does a chicken lay in a week, we brought you details on the number of eggs you should expect from your egg-laying buddies.
For a chicken to lay regularly, it must be healthy and well-fed.
Talking about food, we found out that fermenting a chicken feed helps chickens that lay large eggs lay more often.
Just before you start expecting more eggs than necessary, it’s ideal you purchase any of the best chicken breeds for eggs.
So, in this piece, you will get to find out when chickens start laying regularly.
When do chickens start laying eggs?
There is no common denominator to answer this question. Due to the vastness and variations in the chicken world, it would not be ideal to give an exact age when you should expect a chicken to start laying eggs.
Chickens, like Delawares, start laying at 20 weeks whereas the Lohmann Brown chickens start laying at 4 – 5 weeks.
But on a general scale, you can expect chickens to start laying eggs at 18 to 20 weeks old though not regularly.
Some chickens start laying when they are older.
This is all subject to breed, environment and individual bird.
How often do chickens lay eggs?
On average, most hens lay an egg per egg.
Two in a day is rare but possible.
But three in a day is absolutely impossible.
What are the factors that affect how regular chickens lay eggs?
If you’re wondering when chickens start laying eggs regularly, then you need to understand that certain factors do not support egg production.
Unless these factors are set in place, your chickens will never lay regularly.
And if you’re a production farmer, this will not be good for business.
Below are the factors that affect chickens from laying regularly;
1. Egg production is dependent on the weather.
Although some hens lay regardless of time and season, some hens are affected by the weather.
But most other breeds take time off egg production when the weather is not in their favour.
2. The longer the days, the more the egg production becomes regular.
Your chickens will start to lay eggs regularly when the days are longer.
The day length is a determinant of how often you will get an egg from the flock.
Most chickens do go “off lay” as the days grew shorter.
That’s why they lay fewer eggs in the fall. And sometimes they simply stopped.
3. Birds who feed well, lay eggs regularly.
Constant feeding of the chickens with foods containing high protein will help them lay regularly.
That’s why we recommend fermenting the chicken feed because it contains more nutrients than regular dry feeds.
4. The more the light, the more often the eggs.
Most hens will stop laying when they receive fewer than 12 hours of daylight.
Unless it’s an intentional act to let them mature before starting to lay eggs.
If you want your chickens to lay eggs regularly, it’s ideal to provide light all day for them.
You can let them free range in the day and use the natural light then provide light all night in the pen.
5. Presence of predators will affect egg production.
Chickens will concentrate on laying more eggs regularly when the flying cannibal birds are out of sight.
Predator pressures will keep the birds seeking safety rather than lay eggs.
Therefore, we recommend you keep the chickens indoors if you want them to have more eggs regularly.
6. Age affects chicken egg production.
In the first year of chicken egg production, they may produce more eggs regularly.
However, the older they get, the fewer eggs they produce.
And the larger the eggs.
What do you do when your chickens stop laying eggs?
First, your chickens start laying eggs regularly and then they stop.
What do you do?
Do you just let these eggers go for a vacation?
Most times, this is part of the seasonal cycle.
And at other times, there could be more to it.
If your chickens stop laying eggs regularly, here’s what to do;
1. Use the birds as meat suppliers.
Sometimes, when chickens go “off-lay” they have reached their threshold for egg-laying.
What this means is that they can no longer lay more eggs. Therefore, it’s ideal to sell them as meat.
2. Dispose the chicken.
Another option is to set the birds free into the wild. Although this is not a humane approach.
You can decide to simply kill it.
3. Give the birds the winter off
This is the perfect option to take before the first two options.
You can decide to let them become eggless in the meantime.
Just maybe their body is kind of reshaping.
While you wait, give them medications and focus on other birds.
Maybe, spring will come with a lot of goodness.
Is a Rooster necessary for hens to lay eggs regularly?
No. Not at all.
A rooster is not necessary for chickens to lay eggs regularly.
But this only stands true if you’re on the lookout for eggs for sale.
However, if you want an egg for hatching, a rooster is the gateway to fertilization.
How Long Do Chickens Lay eggs regularly?
On average, most chickens have a lifespan of 8 years. Although some can live up to 10+ years.
During this period, most chickens will lay eggs regularly for 4 years after the first egg production year.
After this period, the number of eggs they lay will be drastically reduced.
A young Australorp can lay 300 eggs in a year, however, an old one is known to lay 180 or less.
So, when your chickens start laying eggs, they can lay regularly for up to 4 years.
Do chickens start laying eggs regularly in the first egg production year?
The first set of eggs a hen lays may be small in size, with soft shells, no yolks or double yolks and irregular.
But, after a week or so, egg production should become more consistent.
When they are 30 weeks old, their performance will be at its peak.
How do I know my chickens are ready to lay eggs?
How do you tell your egg-laying buddies are ready to let down some eggs?
Here’s how to tell:
- Chickens will be between 16-24 weeks old.
- Pullets look full grown with clean, new feathers.
- Combs and wattles have swollen and are a deep, red color
- Bones in the hen’s pelvis will begin to separate.
Conclusion: When do chickens start laying eggs regularly
Now you know when to expect your chickens to start laying eggs regularly.
However, do not forget this is subject to breed, environment and individual bird.
Ensuring that the above-mentioned factors are met is one way to ensure your chickens lay eggs consistently.
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