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Mrs Frugal

Not laying yet?

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If your new Omlet hen isn't laying yet and you're getting worried, don't panic just yet. Omlet hens are delivered at what they call Point of Lay or POL which is around 15 to 18 weeks of age. The hens won't start to lay until around 4 weeks later but some will take even longer to mature and can be as old as 25 weeks before they produce their first eggs.


If you notice that your hens are flattening themselves on the ground when you approach, this is often a good sign that eggs aren't far off as they are adopting the mating position and are displaying some maturity. Another good indicator is to check the pelvic bones. All you do is put your hand flat against the hens bottom as if you are patting them on the bum. You should be able to feel two sharp bones either side of the vent. If the gap between the bones is about 2-3 fingers wide, she's either ready to lay or isn't far off as the bones move apart to let an egg through. If that gap is only around 1 finger's width, she's not ready yet. The comb is another indicator of readiness to lay. If it's small and pale pink, she's still a very young hen but when it begins to go bright red, she's mature.


Sometimes hens coming into lay will produce strange yellowy droppings like the one in the middle...




and this is where a little yolk is released into the dropping as her body gets ready to start egg production.


Sometimes the first eggs are enormous double yolkers and you may find your hen spends a long time sitting on the nest trying to lay it. Some hens also get quite vocal as they start to come into lay but they will quieten down as they get used to this strange new experience.


Unfortunately this is another of the 'no eggs yet' type! I've had my gingernut ranger and miss pepperpot for 6 weeks. The wattles etc on one are getting bigger and redder but the gingernut still has pale small wattles. I was told they might have been 14 weeks old when delivered. Whilst I am fully aware chickens are animals and not machines it would be nice to think that they will actually lay eggs and preferably before next Spring. Any words of encouragement to sustain me through trudging around the garden would be gladly received... (or even tips)


and after a little while...


clucking marvellous !

I discovered egg number one this morning. It takes a lot to get me dancing round the garden at 7am in the morning (- the neighbours no doubt added it to the other quirks they've noticed like putting tights over cherry trees). I think Margo (the Pepperpot who over the past few days has decided I remind her of a cockerell) was the happy layer. I think it was laid yesterday and they sat on it all night (I don't get home till well after dark). She hasn't quite got the hang of laying in the nest bit. Egg number 2 was produced today also laid on the slats but one of them decided to try and eat it. Thanks for the encouragement. My hens are now nicely settled in the lounge and don't seem to be bothered by the fireworks. (Cat's a bit confused though..)

A much happier chicken keeper, thanks guys...

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