If you’ve recently acquired some chickens for your homestead or backyard, no doubt you are anxious to start making those omelettes! Fortunately, like most chickens, easter eggers should start laying at 18 – 20 weeks of age.
The color of the eggs you receive will vary depending on the “kind of easter egger” you’ve purchased. That’s because the easter egger is not really a breed of chicken. It’s actually a chicken which carries the “gene” required to lay those beautiful eggs.
Easter eggers of whatever type are descendants of the Ameraucanas, a breed from Chile which lays blue eggs. Though the eggs you get from an “easter egger” can run the gambit of blue, green, and even pink. They are also quite good layers and you could get up to 250 eggs per year from one chicken.
Since there is not really a “breed standard” for easter eggers, that also means that the adult chickens you hatch could end up looking very different from each other. Most people think this is fun and enjoy the surprise, but if you were expecting a uniform breed you could be a bit disappointed.
What Do I Do If My Chickens Don’t Lay At 18-20 Weeks?
If your chickens are past 18 to 20 weeks and they are not laying, there could be an issue you need to resolve.
- Are your animals stressed?
Stressed chickens may refuse to lay eggs. What do your hens have to worry about? Well, if they don’t feel safe from predators, or even if the weather is bad they may not lay. Start by making sure their pens are secure and that they aren’t either too cold or too hot. You may also want to check and make sure they do not have mite infestations, which can also stress birds. If you’ve just gotten an older bird then you may need to wait for them to become comfortable before they will lay any eggs for you.
- Are they getting enough protein, calcium, and nutrients?
Laying eggs takes a lot out of a bird! If your hens do not have the nutrients they require then they won’t risk laying eggs and depleting themselves. Offering a food with 16 – 22% protein is a good start, but you should also make sure they are getting enough calcium and other nutrients too.
- Are they hiding their eggs from you?
It’s possible that your chickens ARE laying eggs and you just have not found them. Chickens can be pretty sneaky and they will run off to lay eggs in all kinds of strange places. Watch your birds and see where they go. Look for quiet, dark places which could be harboring secret nests.
Tanya is a stay at home mom who blogs online to earn a bit of extra income from her hobbies. She also loves working on projects which she can involve her two kids in and teach them the valuable life-skill of sewing.