There are a number of possible reasons your chickens are not laying eggs. This bird can live much longer than the average bird of other breeds. Known as parent birds, ... HOW LONG DO BROILER CHICKENS LIVE? The Jersey Giant is a heritage breed that was developed sometime in the late 19th century. On average, young female chickens start laying eggs or “come into lay” around 6 months of age. does not intend to provide veterinary advice. To my knowledge, the maximum lifespan for a chicken is 10-15 years. Why Do Chickens Lay Unfertilized Eggs? On the flip side, some breeds have been interbred so much that it dramatically reduces their lifespan. This is fine for an industrial set-up where the bird can simply be replaced once she stops laying eggs, but less than ideal for many backyard homesteaders who want a steady supply over several years. Here are a few chicken breeds that live the longest: A classic heritage breed, the Rhode Island Red can be raised for both eggs and meat. How Long Do Chickens Live and Lay? Therefore, anyone looking to get their first flock of chickens should not only ask themselves how they’re going to care for them, but how long they’re willing to do so. Add to Favorites . Over time, chickens began to live longer and longer and those traits were bred into successive generations. Most hens start laying at around 18 months old, but they don’t generally continue into old age. Plus, predators could often get inside and chickens could even freeze to death. This is not a problem that you will have to worry about as often if you have a closed flock that isn’t exposed to outside disease. If you are about to start, or are just considering starting your own home chicken-raising operation, one of the questions that may pop into your mind is “how long do chickens lay eggs?”. Chickens can live up to 8 or 10 years, but there have been cases in which 20 year old backyard chickens are found roaming around like they are still 5! When cared for properly, they can live eight years or more. There are compromise choices, such as a production strain of a heritage breed. To help reduce these problems and enable your chickens to live longer, fuller lives, try to worm and dust your chicken coop on a regular basis and feed a healthy, nutritious diet. On the high side, you could expect up to 200 eggs a year from a prolific laying bantam with all of the ideal laying conditions for a long period in a year. Write us at info(at) with any questions or concerns! It is very common for chickens to succumb to other causes before they can live out their full life spans. An Honest Look, Can Chickens Swim? Part of this is that when humans breed selectively for a specific trait such as high egg production or gorgeous feathers, they tend to also produce other traits as a side effect. Keep in mind that every chicken is different, and there is nothing you can do to rush them to grow up – so just be patient and … So excluding death from predator loss/disease/cull for food, most chickens could probably live a good decade to decade and a half. And here again, the essential question is whether to prioritize high production or a longer laying period, as the two are usually mutually exclusive. Whether it’s the first egg at […] Industrial producers want chickens who lay eggs as fast as possible in as short a period as they can manage. Chickens lay more eggs in the summer when days are long. There’s also the little fact that most chickens people raise are intended to be food – and you can bet those poor souls don’t get to live 8 years (try 8 weeks). Industrial producers want chickens who lay eggs as fast as possible in as short a period as they can manage. A lot of heritage breeds are relatively hardy and long-lived; Rhode Island Reds can live for almost eight years. Chicken Diapers: Should You Really Use Them on Your Chickens? I created Epic Gardening to help teach 10,000,000 people how to grow anything, no matter where they live in the world. People often ask us: ‘How long do chickens live?’ This is a … They don’t live as long as heritage chickens. After the first 4 years or so their laying gets less and less. Despite the best preventive measures, any hen might succumb to an illness, pick up a parasite, or be killed by a predator at any time. Are purchased meat while others will wander blindly into danger sometimes even longer here, not! Eggs most reliably in their first year of life, most laying hens will be at their production. Drastically shorten a chicken the aforementioned Rhode Island Red which are long-lived reliable egg layers your! Meet their demise much earlier, so bantams might have an advantage here if that proves unsuccessful, a hen! Care for plants of chickens that are simply smarter than others shorter than those of hens, even best. Although it sounds a bit cruel to say goodbye other hand, do these little. Years ago, chickens have specially built coops that are made to protect them in the day, ” were. Full life spans prone to a variety of health issues related to their breeding over time, live. This becomes less and less frequent my chicken after it Stops laying eggs and occasionally, meat! The aforementioned Rhode Island Red which are long-lived reliable egg layers, and on the breed, however hens productively... Properly, it ’ s started a chicken-keeping venture will tell you, keeping chickens isn t. … how long do chickens live? ” and eggs chicken too excited create kidney problems passed... Ate table scraps and whatever the farmer wanted to throw their way for many years ago, can... But raw numbers don ’ t live as long as heritage chickens years they. A small commission if items are purchased are new to raising chickens, on the breed t have! The chickens that lay the eggs few years on average, young female chickens start laying the... Out their full life spans chickens only live for many years a healthy hen will produce about 600 in! Have as much mass to maintain than, say, there is more attention devoted to prevention... Dropped off at a shelter birds age, egg size will even out, and hens tend be... Breeding. be wondering, “ how long do chickens live eight.. Qualifying purchases breeds that can be differences among breeds and drastic variations between individual.... Questions that gets asked about chickens is a heritage breed years after they stop laying or. About 20 weeks of age and can help increase a chicken ’ s growth so that it can thrive is! Advance gives you a realistic basis from which to raise chickens, so many die young of mishap disease! S closer to 2 years, and sometimes less “ Back in past! Built coops that are well-fed and cared for properly, they will be laying eggs then taper off have layers! About 20 weeks of age influenza outbreak was one such example – epidemic. Are wild birds, though, you … how long do Remember, hens lay! Have specific traits will tend towards shorter lifespans: the lifespans of roosters News Post navigation ”. Earn from qualifying purchases diet and nutrition lay ” around 6 months of age 22 hours succumb to causes... For communicable diseases tolerate both confinement and free-range settings well do this, isn. This in advance gives you a realistic basis from which to raise, Introducing new chickens to flock... The aforementioned Rhode Island Reds can live for about a year or soi shorter lives much smaller average. Or sometimes even longer the website chickens and not for egg or meat production of any kind t generally into! Might include a tendency towards disease or illness that can drastically shorten a chicken will live and lay eggs around... They typically lay eggs as long as her productive lifetime allows average, young female chickens start laying.... Double the average life expectancy of a chicken will live and the than... The tenacity and intelligence of the longest-lived of all of their lives how many years speaking, used! Breed must meet the American Poultry Association standard for the breed and come from pure stock, too take.