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Birds coming off lay ?

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I was reading the chicken article in Kitchen Gardenener and it had some info about sof-shelled eggs. In the general 'don't worry it's normal' it said ' those birds coming off lay may lay a soft shell now and again'


Does anyone know what they mean by 'coming off lay' ? does it mean birds coming to the end of their laying life ? or is it a temporary thing.


Reason for the ques is I took in Justine's three birds which inclued a 3year old Miss Pepperpot that wasn't laying except for a soft shelled egg every 2 weeks or so. In the just under 2 months I've had her she doesn't appear to have laid a soft shelled egg at all (or hard shelled) and I wondered whether the soft shelled eggs she laid for Justine were her last effort before stopping completely. I'd have thought a 3 year old would still lay but maybe not. Or could she restart sometime ?


Thanks Patricia

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I think you have interpretted that correctly, I would take 'Coming off lay ' to mean 'heading for retirement' too. I think three years old would be about pensionable age for a hybrid but I could be wrong.


You never know, you might still get a few eggs from her in the summer.


I am not an expert as ours are still young, but I think hybrids lay like crazy for two to three years and pure breeds lay 'steady away' for much longer.



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