Topic Options
#5865 - 06/04/04 03:34 AM Culling hens at two years
Chicken Man Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 450
Loc: Canada
Hi I have 14 or so laying hens and I am going to keep the heavy brids but the sexlink and the leghorns seem to when they get three years old just slow down and die and I was thinking if I culled them when they were two years old then it would save them the pain of dieing slow later.I know the dieing slow part is true because my last layers died that way. looking for your experence

Top
#5866 - 06/08/04 03:10 AM Re: Culling hens at two years
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hi-
Well, your laying hens will certainly become less and less productive as time goes by, but it isn't normal for your chickens to start dying at three years of age. I have many old chickens, like 8 years old, I've lost track! They haven't laid enough eggs to earn their keep for many years, but I enjoy them just the same.
It depends on your goals as a poultry-keeper how long you keep your layers, but chickens can live a long time (or not depending on predators, care, conditions, natural vigor or lack of, etc)
Susie

Top
#5867 - 06/08/04 03:38 AM Re: Culling hens at two years
Chicken Man Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 450
Loc: Canada
Hi yes I know about old hens I have a wyandottes that is like around five years and a sexlink that in four I think that I will just replace tham as they die thanks for you reply

Top
#5868 - 06/08/04 09:28 PM Re: Culling hens at two years
Rogo Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 12/05/03
Posts: 469
Loc: Arizona
Usually, only meat birds die young due to their fast growing. You might try to find out what's going on at your place.

The chooks can live up to 20 years. I've had 7 year olds still laying every other day and I know of older birds still laying. My birds lay all year around with no added heat or light.

Top
#5869 - 06/10/04 09:12 PM Re: Culling hens at two years
Anonymous
Unregistered


Rogo... with all due respect (I am not picking on you)... you have had 7 year old birds that lay every other day? So, they lay 182 or so eggs a year? Many birds in their prime achieve only 250 eggs a year.

Did you keep accurate records or is this just anecdotal BS? Or perhaps just a 'sense' from your memory?

As you might guess, I don't believe it. The 7, 8 and 9 year old hens that we have all lay between 0 and 50 eggs a year with the average being about 16 eggs a year(some have stopped completely for several years only to start up again). ... And we do keep accurate records on these old gals.

Chickenman, the commercial operators keep layers for one and sometimes two seasons. Keeping them for a second season is getting more popular now because the price of point-of-lay hens is so high. But they are molted between the first and second season.

Don't believe it when people tell you that 4-7 year old hens are good layers. They are not. They are good PETS, but they are not good layers.

Top
#5870 - 06/11/04 03:39 AM Re: Culling hens at two years
D. Caveny Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 1102
Loc: Arizona
There is an excellent section in Hutt (1949)pertaining to senescence in relation to egg production from page 333 through 339. The bottom line is that egg production decreases at the rate of not less than 13 to 19% per year as a hen ages. one can see that after 3 years her production will be to the point of where she will not produce enough eggs to pay for fixed and variable costs of production.

Top


Moderator:  Admin @ The Coop, Foehn