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How Many Eggs Per Day Do Chickens Lay

How Many Eggs Per Day Do Chickens Lay? This a simple question, with a slightly complicated answer. When planning the hen cycle, an important consideration is egg production. The short answer is that depending on the hen breed will lay more or fewer eggs per year. The best breeds of laying hens lay about 350 eggs per year (one egg per day), while the worst lay only 50 eggs per year or less. However, the calculation is not so simple because hens do not lay the same number of eggs each year of their lives even in optimal conditions and the number of eggs decreases as they get older. In this article, we tell you how to estimate the number of eggs they lay during their lifetime.

When it comes to poultry farming and breeding hens for high egg production, it is critical to select specific breeds of chickens for laying eggs with a very high egg-laying index. Otherwise, it’s a waste of resources like feed, space, and time.

Before we begin, let’s just clarify something. Although it is conventional to refer to chickens for eggs since the female chicken lays the eggs, we shall refer to them as “hens” and distinguish between laying hens, meat hens, and chickens, dual purpose (eggs and meat), incubator hens, and decorative hens.

When Do Hens Start Laying Eggs?

A hen (called a chicken until she is one year old) starts laying eggs when she is about 24 weeks old. However, some breeds start when they are older.

Healthy hens lay eggs most reliably for the first 2 to 3 years. After that, egg production decreases considerably.

How Often Do Chickens Lay Eggs at First

Female chickens will start to lay eggs when are about 6 months old. Then, when become a hen and begins laying eggs.

So, the question “how many chickens lay eggs per day?” may be tricky because chickens are too young for laying eggs, and technically until become hens won’t lay eggs.

In the beginning, it will not lay one egg per day. But sooner, will do. Breeds of hens that are not good for laying eggs may start laying eggs later.

Some specific breeds of laying hens have extremely high laying rates ranging from 260 to 350 eggs per year, depending on the variety. So, you will have 1 egg per day per laying hen after the female chicken is about 1 year old, for a couple of years.

The size and color of the egg will also differ depending on the breed of hen.

The egg taste depends on the breed of the hen and the feed.

By general rule, the best-laying chickens do not incubate their eggs since they prefer to feed and lay eggs naturally rather than incubate them.

In general, 80 – 90 % is considered exceptional egg production (100 percent = 1 egg per hen each day). But, your hens’ breed, shelter, weather, management, parasite load, and nutrition may all influence how rapidly they lay eggs.

The first eggs will most likely be tiny, but they will get larger over time. When your chickens get older, egg size will equal out and egg output will gradually fall.

You should expect a hen to lay around 80% as many eggs at two years old as she did at one year. As a result, if your hen produces 250-300 eggs in her first year, you may expect her to produce 200-250 eggs in her second year under ideal conditions.

How Many Eggs Per Day Per Chicken

It is a common misunderstanding that a hen lays one egg a day, every day. Although it takes 24-26 days for an egg to form, a new cycle does not always begin immediately after an egg is laid.

Most hens lay one egg per day, but factors such as weather, day length, nutrition, and the presence of predators will affect daily egg production. Egg laying is highly dependent on day length, and most hens will stop laying when they receive less than 12 hours of daylight.

Factors Influencing Egg Laying

Both the number of eggs you can get from a hen and the number of years producing eggs depends on several variables, including the following factors:

  • Breed
  • Pre-laying chick management
  • Light management
  • Nutrition
  • Space allowances

How Many Eggs Per Day Do Chickens Lay

In the following chart, you will a summary of the best breeds of hens and information to determine How Many Eggs Per Day Do Chickens Lay.

Best Hens for Laying Eggs by BreedEggs/year on the Best YearEggs/year on the Second YearEgg Color Egg Weight Type of Purpose for Poultry Farming
Lohman350-360300  Layers
Isa Brown320-330280Brown Eggs65 gr. Large eggsLayers
Leghorn320-330270White Large Eggs55-60 gr.Layers
Cream Legbar or Cream Bar300240Green Eggs60 gr.Layers, Great for Cold Weather
Plymouth Rock or Plymouth Barred Rock260-280200Brown Eggs60-65 gr.Dual Purposes
Sussex180-200120White Eggs55 gr.Best for Dual Purposes Eggs and Meat  Great for Cold Weather
Rhode Island170-20080  Egg Hatching and Layer
(Scientific Article, Advanced Practical Strategies to Enhance Table Egg Production)
eggs per day per chicken

Hen Eggs Per Day: Breed Factor

For Lohman hens, Isa Brown hens, and Leghorn hens you can easily have 1 egg per day in the best year of any of these hens.

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After our discussion about How Many Eggs Per Day Do Chickens Lay? you should know what to expect regarding the number of eggs per day and year. Let’s see some reasons to explain why hens are laying fewer eggs or no longer laying eggs.

Some Reasons Why Hens No Longer Lay Eggs

Many factors can affect egg production, with health (pre- and post-laying) being one of the most important. If hens stop laying, we may be able to identify the source of the problem by asking the following questions.

Have The Hens Been Laying For 10 Months Or More?

The hens may be at the end of their laying cycle. If so, they will stop production, go through a molt (feather loss), take a break, and start laying again. If the hens have been laying for less than 10 months, something else may be causing their lack of production.

Are The Hens Eating Enough of The Right Feed?

Feeding the wrong feed, diluting feed with scraped grain, or limiting the amount of feed available can cause hens to have a nutritional deficiency, which will cause them to molt and stop producing. When hens are nutritionally deficient, it is common to see feather pecking and a loss of egg production.

hen eggs per day

Are Hens Getting Enough Daylight Hours Per Day?

As we explained previously, the answer to determining How Many Eggs Per Day Chickens Lay may be complicated because it is not entirely up to choose the right breeding. It is depending on the shelter, nutrition, the age of the hens, etc. Another variable is the hours of light exposition.

A decrease in the number of daylight hours per day will generally put a hen out of production. For this reason, many hens without supplemental light stop producing during the fall and winter months.

While in factory farming, the light in the house is not turned off in an attempt to confuse the animals into believing that it is always daylight.

How Long Do Hens Live?

The life expectancy of hens varies widely, with most hens generally living between 3 and 7 years. However, with ideal care, they can live even longer.

How Long Do Chickens Lay Eggs

After discussing “How Many Eggs Per Day Do Chickens Lay?”, let’s answer How Long Do Chickens Lay Eggs?

Laying hens or free-range hens lay very intensively in the first and second years, although from the third year onwards the rate slows down.

On the other hand, dual purposes and ornamental hens lay at a slower rate, but for more years. Hens start laying eggs at five or six months of age.

As in all animal species, young hens are more fertile and therefore lay more frequently than older hens. Their cycle ceases definitively at eight years of age. The annual egg-laying cycle is conditioned by the daily hours of light.

There are certain seasons of the year when hens may stop laying, specifically autumn in our latitudes when the days are shorter. Spring is the best time to fill your egg cups.

About Julia Morgan

Julia Morgan is an agronomist and a master gardener. In her previous roles, Julia was an advisor promoting large-scale food growing in urbanized areas, introducing the concept of chemical-free produce. She is an expert in putting her hands in the soil, developing organic foods, and improving production processes for decades. Julia is a natural teacher and encourages every person in her way to grow their own food. She split her days between writing and reviewing for The Garden Style Website and offering assessments to cure edible land. Julia enjoys connecting with The Garden Style Community.

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