Owning poultry is not an easy task. If you want to increase the number of poultry that you have, check out this guide on how to purchase a chicken egg incubator that we have put together for novices like you.
In this comprehensive article, we have decided to answer a question that seems to interest numerous farmers that is: how can a chicken lay eggs every day? So, if you find this topic worthy of your attention, be sure to keep on reading.
Do all chicken lay eggs on a daily basis?
As the specialists argue, chickens are created in such a way so that they lay eggs daily until they have a clutch or around a dozen of eggs. If the owner keeps removing the eggs from the nest, adult hens will continue to lay them.
Not all hens lay the same number of eggs. Those chickens that were bred especially for egg-laying can do so throughout the year, no matter the changes in weather. However, unbred poultry only lay up to 12 eggs annually, at a specific time. To lay eggs with consistency, chickens need no less than 14 hours of daylight.
If you want your flock to keep producing eggs during the winter, you can invest in artificial lighting. Still, numerous farmers prefer to allow the flock the winter off.
The laying process
All hens only have a functional ovary, the left one. What is more, the bird’s ovary contains follicles of various sizes and level of maturity. Every time a follicle reaches maturity, a yolk is formed. Next, the yolk travels from the bird’s ovary to the oviduct.
The oviduct is made of different parts. First, there is the Infundibulum, the part where the eggs stay for about 15 minutes. If the hen has been fecundated, this is the place where the fertilization process occurs.
If you want to breed chicken, you should remember that the sperm can survive inside the oviduct for up to four weeks. So, if you want to use a particular cockerel for breeding, it is vital that you keep the other male chickens away for a couple of weeks.
The second part of the ovary of a chicken is called the Magnum. Here, the egg remains for up to three hours. Plus, this is the place where the white is generated. Next, the egg travels through the oviduct until it reaches the Isthmus. In this section, the egg remains for around one hour. In this interval of time, two distinct membranes form around it.
Once the membranes are formed, the egg rests in the uterus for one more day. Now is the time when the shell is formed. Finally, the last stage of the egg-laying process is in the cloaca. By using a special hormone called arginine vasotocin, uterine contractions are generated and the egg is laid.
How many eggs can a hen lay?
Numerous experts have observed that the prime laying period of a hen is between it being 20 weeks of age and 78 weeks. Still, the majority of hens keep laying eggs after the 78th week.
A hen can produce up to 300 eggs per year. However, there are periods during the year when the hen stops laying eggs due to the lack of light.
If you want to use the eggs laid by your hens for breeding, it is advisable that you do not wash them so that bacteria are not introduced inside the egg.
Factors that might influence the laying process
First things first, the age of the hen is important. As we have said, hens start laying eggs when they have reached maturity at 20 weeks of age. Yet, until the 30th week, they will not lay eggs consistently.
After two to three years, chickens lose their ability to lay eggs consistently. Because of this, most breeders chose to replace older hens so that their production ratings are at their peak. Studies have also shown that stressed chickens do not lay the same number of eggs as happy ones. Because of this, it is vital that you provide your flock with a comfortable living space and with plenty of room.
Nutrition is also worth taking into account. When hens are not fed correctly, they are no longer able to produce healthy eggs regularly.
If you notice a drop in the egg production, you should take into consideration the theory that some hens have decided to hide their eggs rather than actually lay them in the coop.
Breed is another factor you should keep in mind. While a Rhode Island Red production hen can lay up to five eggs every week, a Sultan hen can only lay one. Therefore, if you want to get chickens that lay plenty of eggs, you should look for hens that were specially bred to do so.
There are a couple of breeds that are highly appreciated for their ability to lay eggs often. The Leghorn hens are easy to recognize because of their floppy comb. They can lay up to 4 to 6 medium eggs per week and they are easily adaptable to most environments. Due to this, Leghorn is the most abused breed in the egg industry.
Rhode Island Reds is another breed worth keeping in mind. These hens can lay between three and five large, brown eggs weekly. Plus, their meat is considered tasty. Because they are friendly and calm, they are great to have around in the yard.
The Sussex hens have quite the history, as the specialists argue that this breed of chicken existed in the time of the Roman Invasion of Britain. This chicken can lay three to six large brown eggs every week. The numbers depend on the bird.
Similarly to the Rhode Island Reds, these hens are calm and docile and they don’t mind being handled. So, they are friendly toward children. One thing that you should remember is that, although these hens are tolerant of numerous types of weather, they do not thrive in hot climates.