Is your hen laying?

Laying hen isĀ a common term for a female, grown chicken that is kept primarily for laying eggs. Some chickens are raised for meat, while others are raised to produce eggs, and some are dual-purpose.

If a hen is laying the pelvic bones (pointy bones at the vent) should be soft, pliable and well spread, so that 3 fingers can fit in that space. If it is not laying they will be hard, closed and only 1 or 2 fingers can fit in that space.

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Laying hen

A laying hen will have a clean, pink, moist vent about an inch in diameter for large breeds. If the vent is small, dry, and pale, the hen not laying.

A laying hen has smooth and tight feathers. If they are ruffled and loose she is not laying.


The abdomen should be expanded, soft and pliable. If it is contracted, hard and fleshy she is not laying.
A good layer should have flexible pubic bones, wide apart to allow three fingers to fit between them while those of a poor layer are tight, quite rigid and narrow, not allowing the fingers. This wide pubic bone space normally facilitates easy passage of eggs.