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Author Topic: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)  (Read 12408 times)

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joyfull

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Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« on: September 24, 2012, 08:59 »
The nights are drawing in and the mornings are darker which can only mean we have passed the point of equal lengths of night and day. Winter is on it's way and it's getting decidedly chilly. Along with this those of you with pure breed and hybrid chickens over three will soon start to notice a drop in egg production. Your chickens will soon go into a moult and you may find your coops and runs starting to look like your girls have been having a pillow fight.
The lack of light and the loss and regrowth of feathers means that your girls egg production will slow and often stop altogether until late February/early March.

So what can you do to ensure you have eggs over winter?
You could add artificial lighting like the egg producers do to keep the girls laying but personally I prefer to let my girls have a rest.
So now is the time that I start to save my hens eggs.
I bake lots of cakes and quiches and freeze them, and I make Yorkshire puddings and again freeze them (this can be either as fully cooked ones or just as the batter - which takes up less room in the freezer.
I also freeze beaten eggs in batches of 2's and 3's - you can add a little salt or sugar if you wish depending on if you want them for savoury or sweet dishes but I never bother. When thawed they come out like thick custard so I simply beat in some water to get them back to the consistency I want. These can then be used for omelettes, scrambled eggs or for more cakes etc. Frozen eggs will keep for 3 months so make sure you label the containers.
Another thing you can do is pickled eggs which will keep for ages.
In all the years of keeping chickens I haven't had to buy any eggs (except for hatching) so I hope these tips help you to have eggs over winter. If you have any tips please do add them  :)
« Last Edit: September 24, 2012, 09:08 by joyfull »
Staffies are softer than you think.


GrannieAnnie

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2012, 09:06 »
Earlier in the year I did have a glut of eggs, so like you Joy, I baked lots of cakes an stuff for the freezer, and sometimes freeze eggs too.

But since the people up the road have put a sign out on the A52 near us for their so called fresh veg and free range eggs, none of which they grow themselves, we've had so many people coming for eggs that we had to take our sign in from the front of the house.

I still haven't got any eggs for us though as our regularas still call in!   :)

We don't put any lights on in their coop either.  They need their moult and a rest like you said, but I hate the look of disappointment on people's faces when I say I haven't got any eggs left!!

andy46

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2012, 14:15 »
Hope this does not sound a daft question but my girls are 29 weeks old will they still lay through winter as they are to young for a moult? i am newish to chooks and still learning chickeny things :)
Pull up a perch!!

joyfull

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2012, 14:24 »
if they are laying now and regularly then you should be fine this winter - they may not lay every day but will keep up the production.

andy46

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2012, 18:53 »
Yes they lay every day so hopefully they will lay through winter thanks for the reply joyfull :) :)

wildwitchy

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2012, 20:55 »
My new ones are not laying yet - too young/not really prolific egg layers anyway, so no eggs yet. I get the odd customer still call for eggs and they are very dissapointed when I say no eggs. Even though I took the sign down ages ago.

I have got lighting in the coop & did use it on a timer when I had the layers.

Blobbs

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2012, 15:14 »
Hi
We have put a light in the coop in the hope that our hens will continue to lay but production has already dropped to 5 or 6 eggs a day from 8 hens. in the summer we regularly had 7 or 8. My question is how many hours light should they have and is it split between night and morning ?

They were so funny the first night the light was on....they all sat on the roof and we had to post them in one by one !! The next morning most of the eggs were in a clutch on the floor under the light. They are such funny creatures!

My dogs are terrified of them as they have all been zapped by the electric fence so think that hens have superior powers !!  ::)

ANHBUC

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2012, 17:46 »
My dogs are terrified of them as they have all been zapped by the electric fence so think that hens have superior powers !!  ::)

 :lol: :lol: :lol:
Ain't Nobody Here But Us Chickens!
Bagpuss RIP 1992 - June 2012, 1 huge grass carp (RIP "Jaws" July 2001 - December 2011), 4 golden orfe, 1 goldfish and 1 fantail fish (also huge)! plus 4 Italian quail, 1 Japanese quail, 1 Rosetta quail.

lizt

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2012, 16:12 »
very useful info, i never have considered freezing eggs, but i will now! what a good idea to freeze the beaten egg in small batches.

thank you. x

symonep

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2012, 20:14 »
Ours havent slowed down yet, we thought they had as we were away for a few days last week and had a neighbour look in on them and she only got 3 eggs a day, the day after we got back it went back to 5 a day and has been since.

Bless them, they must have missed us!

I have never thought of putting a light in their coop but dont think i ever would either, far too tight to pay for extra electricity  :D
Gained an allotment on the 19th June 08, 135ft by 40ft! eekk. Finally after 4 years it is looking like an allotment and not a jungle

We have 5 lovely hens in the garden, fish, 2 dogs and 2 canaries

andy46

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2012, 20:50 »
My two new girls have just started laying last week so hopefully they will keep going and my other two will all so :)

ANHBUC

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2012, 20:54 »
My two new girls have just started laying last week so hopefully they will keep going and my other two will all so :)

What age and breed are they andy46?  I am still waiting for my young Welsummer bantams to start laying.  All my other hens have gone on strike!   ::)

Hen 1-0 Fox

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2012, 21:57 »
My girls are less than a year old... No signs of molt and each still laying... Not sure when to expect the winter break of even if they'll have one with it being their first year... Guess time will tell
x1 Light Sussex x1 Black Rock x1 Bluebell x1 Silver Sussex

andy46

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #13 on: November 06, 2012, 20:56 »
 Anhbuc I have two warrens that i bought in july as pol and are laying everyday(fingers crossed) then i got two more pol in sept which are brown novo gens(look just like warrens)and they have been doing well eversince too, am getting four lovely eggs every day andy46

ANHBUC

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Re: Winter and Eggs (or lack of)
« Reply #14 on: November 06, 2012, 22:18 »
Anhbuc I have two warrens that i bought in july as pol and are laying everyday(fingers crossed) then i got two more pol in sept which are brown novo gens(look just like warrens)and they have been doing well eversince too, am getting four lovely eggs every day andy46

I do miss my fresh eggs, I suppose they will be even more of a treat when they start laying again. 



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