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What No Eggs?
#1
Wonder if anyone can give me some advice.



After lots of of planning, research, measuring, sawing and hammering we went off to market to buy our hens.



We ended up with 10 chicks, 3 leghorns and 3 warrans. The chicks are housed separately to the other 6 who are all pol. The warrans were 19 weeks old when we had them, not sure of the age of the leghorns. After a few days of establishing pecking order the warrans and leghorns sorted themselves out and now live comfortably together and all signs of bullying has disappeared. Smile



The leghorns are quite happily laying eggs and generally we get 1-3 eggs per day. However, the warrans are laying diddly squat Sad They're all fed on corn, pellets (inc grit), plenty of greens, plain pasta & various other hen delights.



Does anyone have any advice as to why the warrans may not be laying yet? Just concerned that I may be doing something wrong or they're not happy even though they're eating well and certainly look healthy (I've recently wormed them and de-mited them)
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#2
How long have you had the hens for? Sometimes it can take some of them longer to settle down when they move house. Did you get them all from the same place? Do you know how old the warrens are?



Sorry lots of questions, just trying to work out an answer for you.



Do you have any apple cider vinegar? You could try giving them that at 2% ~ 20mls in 1 litre of water in a non galvanised drinker. It's a general pick me up and can be used 7 days each month.



Wat colour are your leghorns and what type are your chicks?


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#3
Also, you say you you' went off to market' was that a figure of speech or do you mean that literally, if so what sort of market was it ie. one that was recommended or did you follow a small ad. in the papers. The reason I ask is that sometimes people sell their chooks in markets when they shouldn't be sold, or sell young chickens to beginners that are actually cockerels (I am not suggesting that is the case here) - more questions for you Smile
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#4
Do you remember that person who bought a broody and chicks at a market or auction, Zoe, without much knowledge and all the chicks were boys? I've heard also that at auctions or markets or whatever, people will often sell off their old stock to unsuspecting people. Of course it just be that yours were younger than the leghorns
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#5
Or the move along with all this hot weather has made them decide to wait until it cools down a bit
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#6
Crumbs, I'll try and answer all the questions in one go!!



We've had the hens for about 6 weeks now. They all came from the same local poultry market but from different homes - the 3 leghorns from one home, chicks from another and the warrans from another (if that makes sense).



The market itself is quite large and well known in the area for poultry sales. A number of friends have bought poultry from there in the past so could advise on what to look for health wise etc. In hindsight, there wasn't the opportunity to talk to the warrans owners before the sale so we couldn't establish whether they had previously laid. They were advertised as 19 week old POL, all three were vaccinated & defintely all girlies!



I know one of the leghorns is slightly older than the others as she has a slightly curved toe on one foot but they're all fine and dandy laying away quite merrily. Two of them are a chocolate brown colour whilst the other one is a slightly creamy coffee colour with white tips on her wing feathers, very pretty.



The warrans are all really sociable and seem to have developed a water can fetish which is rather odd but hey, each to their own :o



The chicks are definitely all girlies and were sold as such. It was one of the reasons we didn't go for a hen with chicks as we were worried about getting little boys, don't think the neighbours would approve too much. They're about 11 weeks old now and eating us out of house and home. They're rhode island red x light sussex so hopefully should be good layers once they start. They're a gorgeous reddy brown with black tips on their feathers.



I'm off to Tesco tomorrow so will definitely put Apple Cider Vinegar on the shopping list. Presumably I just add this to their water?? Would the chicks be able to have this too or are they still too young?



This is all a huge learning curve for me and I really want to make sure that I do everything right for my girlies as I'm so conscious that being a beginner I may miss something that could affect them.



Really value your advise so thank you.

Big Grin
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#7
Hi Blakey



I know Zoe or Summayah will confirm this, you don't want the supermarket version of apple cider vinegar, it's too refined. You need the cloudy one which you can get from animal feed merchants.



Hope this helps Smile
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#8
Hopefuly Blakey you will log in before you toodle off to Tesco because Chris is quite right, the vinegar sold in supermarkets is refined and that's not so good for the hens; you want to find yourself more of an agricultural merchant or an equestrian shop as they will sell the unrefined apple cider vinegar, which is the one you want. It comes normally in 5ltr containers and I think it is about £12, it will last you for ages.



I will have a look in my book and see what type the leghorns are out of curiousity, do they all lay white eggs? Your rir x ls is a good mix and makes your chicks sex linked, ie;can tell the sex on hatching but that won't work if you breed from them as sex linked only works on the first generation. Do your warrens have red combs on them or are they more pinkish as red combs are a sign they are ready to lay. Another product you ought to have in stock is something for lice and mites which this year seem to be quite prevalent with the weather we are having, they love the humid conditions!



The next set of questions refers to their feeding - what is your feeding routine in a standard day as this can give an indication of why they may not be laying? Chooks love fresh water, in fact they love any water that isn't in their drinkers from what I can make out. I put lovely fresh water in their drinkers but they will still go and drink out of the pond :rolleyes: Your chicks can have ACV as well but in reduced amounts, what feed are your chicks on? Sorry for all the questions!
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#9
Blakey Wrote:Crumbs, I'll try and answer all the questions in one go!!



We've had the hens for about 6 weeks now. They all came from the same local poultry market but from different homes - the 3 leghorns from one home, chicks from another and the warrans from another (if that makes sense).



The market itself is quite large and well known in the area for poultry sales. A number of friends have bought poultry from there in the past so could advise on what to look for health wise etc.

didn't these 'knowledgeable frineds advise you to quarantine the birds seperately before placing them together?



Quote:In hindsight, there wasn't the opportunity to talk to the warrans owners before the sale so we couldn't establish whether they had previously laid. They were advertised as 19 week old POL, all three were vaccinated & defintely all girlies!



I know one of the leghorns is slightly older than the others as she has a slightly curved toe on one foot but they're all fine and dandy laying away quite merrily. Two of them are a chocolate brown colour whilst the other one is a slightly creamy coffee colour with white tips on her wing feathers, very pretty.

Those are not leghorn colours I'm afraid. Perhaps they are leghorn crosses?



Quote:The warrans are all really sociable and seem to have developed a water can fetish which is rather odd but hey, each to their own :o

what do you mean by water fetish?



Quote:The chicks are definitely all girlies and were sold as such. It was one of the reasons we didn't go for a hen with chicks as we were worried about getting little boys, don't think the neighbours would approve too much. They're about 11 weeks old now and eating us out of house and home. They're rhode island red x light sussex so hopefully should be good layers once they start. They're a gorgeous reddy brown with black tips on their feathers.



I'm off to Tesco tomorrow so will definitely put Apple Cider Vinegar on the shopping list. Presumably I just add this to their water?? Would the chicks be able to have this too or are they still too young?



This is all a huge learning curve for me and I really want to make sure that I do everything right for my girlies as I'm so conscious that being a beginner I may miss something that could affect them.



Really value your advise so thank you.

Big Grin

The best advice I can give would be in hindsight.

You should have gone out and bought yourself a copy of 'starting with chickens' by Katie Thear and done your homework before buying them. You should have gone to a proper breeder, looked at the stock they had, asked questions and listened to what they told you. That way you would know exactly what breed and ages you were getting, been able to see the parent stock and have after sales advice.



In car terms what you ended up doing was building a garage, going to a car auction and buying something, and then come looking for advice on how to drive Wink

How do you know that they are innoculated, or that they are the age you were told or that they are females? Dealers and unscrupulous sellers tell lies if it means making a sale.

I don't because I care about my birds. I care so much that I refuse to sell mine in poultry sales and have been known to refuse to sell to someone I thought was not ready for them, hadn't bothered to do any homework or wasn't going to look after them properly.

With poultry markets, you don't know if the birds you bought are old, or diseased (you cannot see mareks) or whether a dealer has bought from one sale, travelled across the country and sold elsewhere to make a profit.

Buying poultry at a sale for an inexperienced person is just like going to buy a car from a car auction.
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#10
ChrisB Wrote:Hi Blakey



I know Zoe or Summayah will confirm this, you don't want the supermarket version of apple cider vinegar, it's too refined. You need the cloudy one which you can get from animal feed merchants.



Hope this helps Smile

I am of the opinion that this is a myth. There is no difference between them. Vinegar makers make one batch of vinegar. The clearer stuff is siphoned off for human consumption because it looks better. The cloudy stuff at the bottom of the vat is still the same vinegar but gets bottled for horses etc. I use human grade stuff at present but I have used the animal one too and not noticed any difference at all. I have also used the animal one for my own food.

I wonder where this idea that it was somehow different or better started out?
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#11
I hope you're right about the acv, Fenwoman ~ it makes it so much easier to buy. At present I have my daughter bringing it for me when she visits, because I know she can get it from the local Countrystore.



Thinking about it again, I'm not sure. The first lot I got I bought on line ~ I'd read it was useful for them and couldn't get it locally, or so I thought. So I bought from a natural food store ~ which sells human stuff as opposed to animal stuff. It was very expensive and very very cloudy ~ even cloudier than the horse sruff I bought next. In fact I was worried my horse stuff wasn't going to be as good.



I suppose looking at it from another angle, it could be that the internet store I bought from needed theirs to look different from the supermarket one ~ because of the exhorbitant cost of theirs.
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#12
Blakey, I had a rir x lt sussex cross girl and she turned into a very fluffy girl, almost close to being an orpington, except she didn't have the stately walk of an orpington. I hope you have fun with them all.



I just remembered you asked a question ~ yes your little ones will be fine with the acv. If they had been under 8 weeks then they would have needed it at half the strength the other girls could have. Don't put any water down for them except the ACV water and then they will have to drink only that and therefore take a proper amount in. You'll probably find they drink the water even faster with that in ~ mine certainly do. You could also put a crushed garlic clove in at the same time. They do actually sell something that is acv + garlic, so it's fine for them to have the 2 things at the same time.
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#13
How are your chooks settling in Blakey?, It should not be too long before they are old enough to start laying Smile
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