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Typically a pullet (young female chicken not yet laying) will begin to lay eggs around the age of 16-24 weeks. Before she begins laying, you can observe a few signs that she’s almost ready:
A pullet’s comb and wattles will enlarge and turn bright red in color when she’s nearing point-of-lay. The comb and wattles also look somewhat waxy and plump.
The Submissive Squat
If you have a rooster in your flock, you may notice that he is suddenly interested in breeding with the pullets. If you don’t have a rooster, you may still notice that your pullets begin to squat when you approach them. Squatting with the wings spread out low is a submissive posture a hen takes when the rooster is going to mount. Young pullets will often squat when a human quickly approaches.
Interest In Nesting Boxes
Within a few weeks of the onset of laying, you may see a pullet jump into the nesting boxes and check them out. Put some golf balls or wooden eggs in the nest boxes to help the pullets understand that the nesting boxes would be an excellent spot to lay eggs.
Switch The Diet
When you begin to see the first signs of a pullet who is nearing point-of-lay, switch the diet over to a layer ration that contains calcium.
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