How to get your chooks to lay more eggs

How to get your chooks to lay more eggs

Feeling pretty puffed up about your busy hen house now everyone is scrambling for eggs? Well, by following these tips, you may even be able to turn your fabulous flock into a side hustle (or just help out the fine yolks - we mean folks - next door)

Chickens living their best backyard life will lay around six eggs per week. The exception to this prolific poultry production happens in the winter, when they may stop laying altogether. This is due to a hormonal signal which happens with a drop in sunlight hours, indicating to the chicken that her chicks may not survive the cold.

Chooks may also stop laying while they moult, a process which takes 8-12 weeks and uses much of their nutritional resources. A high protein diet can hurry this process along, giving your girls the juice they need to grow new feathers. Even when they’re not moulting, chickens require a diet of around 16% protein, which can be given in the form of seeds, grains, protein-rich pellets, and food scraps.

A good rule of thumb (or claw) is to remember that chickens eat anything we do. This means you can give them bits off your dinner plate but they won’t munch down the likes of onion skin, raw potato or citrus peel. But unlike us, chickens also dig on mealworms and insects, which are a great protein source – and helpful for boosting egg production.

Calcium is also a key ingredient for good quality eggs, so make sure your chooks have plenty of grit. Aside from oyster shell grit, another option is to bake used eggshells in the oven and crush these up. It’s called recycling! But don’t give them uncooked eggshells as this may give them a taste for their own supply.
Topflite Scratch & Lay is an easy way to give chickens a highly nutritious and balanced diet. Containing barley, canary seeds, sunflower seeds, wheat, oats, kibbled maize, kibbled green peas, poultry pellets (with soya bean meal, peas, wheat by-products and vegetable oil), and grit, this is a protein-packed product that will give them everything they need to nibble in one kibble.

All in all, healthy and happy chooks will be great layers, so if you have a chook off the lay – and she’s not moulting, suffering from the cold, or entering retirement (chickens do stop laying after around 2.5 years) - it is best to get her to the vet and see what’s happening. Hopefully, with a boost in nutrition and a good scratch around she’ll be back to her plucky self again.


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