Why am I still getting lots of eggs ?
Well I am feeding a lot of freeloaders right now but that’s just part of understanding eggs ARE a seasonal food. Something we don’t like to hear or deal with nowadays as a culture.
So what’s my tip if you want eggs through winter and shorter days ?
Replace ten to twenty percent of your laying flock each year .
Chickens older than a year called hens go through a molt. It happens naturally when daylight hours reduce and it signals to the chicken it’s time to take a break and focus on us before next breeding season, which is basically what chickens are producing eggs for, we just stop that process by removing their eggs every day. When they molt, they lose their feathers and basically look like we did when my mom cut our bangs as kids. They need more protein now too.
Chickens under a year most likely born in the spring, are called pullets and they don’t molt their first year. So they start laying and keep laying through their first winter. Voila ….eggs.
I don’t use lights to extend the daylight hour forcing them to lay through the molt. I believe it shortens the life and quality of life of the chickens. Who doesn’t need a rest in the winter ??
Either cull out your older gals and use them for bone broth or suck up the feed cost and support them through the molt. I cull my older roosters in the fall and usually just let my older girls die off naturally. They have earned it.