In general hens usually start laying eggs at around 6 months. Heavy weight breeds such as Plymouth Rocks can start laying eggs a bit later. Light weight breeds such as Austrlorps may start sooner. Egg production usually slows down during the winter and usually after the 2 year mark egg productions slows down in general.
Below are some calm breeds that can be good for family backyard chickens and are known to be good egg layers.
- Rhode Island Reds – 6 eggs per week – starting at 18 to 20 weeks
- Temperment: Friendly
- Plymoth Rocks – 4 to 5 eggs per week – May continue laying eggs during the winter.
- Temperment: Calm
- Golden Comet – 5 to 6 eggs a week – starting at around 16 weeks
- Temperment: Gentle, Quiet
- Australorp – 5 eggs a week
- Temperment: Gentle
Feeding Your Chickens
Start Feed – Up to 6 weeks (20 to 22% protein)
Young Pellets – 6 to 20 weeks (16-18% protein)
Layer Feed – 20 weeks or when they start laying eggs (16 to 18% protien)
Food scraps chickens can eat include – Bread, cooked meat (cut in small pieces), corn, fruits, grains such as rice, oatmeal, peas, vegetables(broccoli, carrots, cabbage, chard, cucumbers, kale, lettuce, tomatoes, potatoes).
Check out the chicken selector tool on The Happy Chicken Coop website.