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3yo Hen laying soft and/or weak shells

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

We have 3 RIR's (all about 3 yrs old) and one of them has been laying soft or weak shelled eggs over the last year. They're free range for most of the day and have full access to their food and plenty of water.

 

It's very sporadic and we've only caught one of them in the act of laying an egg. After quite a while laying, her egg burst (outside of her and onto the wall).  

 

I read on a thread about calcium and purchased Rep-Cal but am now considering just adding their oystershell into their layer pellet.

 

Then, I read on another thread that if it's just one of the hens---it's a genetic issue. But we don't know for sure that it's only Whitey with this problem.  If it IS a genetic issue, there's no reason to consider adding calcium right?  

 

As they're not pullets just getting their lay on, I wonder if it's stress.  We just lost the deal on buying our house and maybe they heard about it? 

 

Hoping someone will tell me that it's just a 3yo phase and to just watch and wait. I will mix the oyster shell into the layer pellets, anyway.

post #2 of 5


You may wish to consider simply offering oyster shell as a supplementary feed, i.e. in a box / feeder nest to your layers feed. From what i have read, most hens do their best laying in their first year or so and then egg production begins to decline. If you've given oyster shell to boost calcium, then theres not much else you can do. 

 

CT

Nairobi, Kenya
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Nairobi, Kenya
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post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CTKen View Post
 


You may wish to consider simply offering oyster shell as a supplementary feed, i.e. in a box / feeder nest to your layers feed. From what i have read, most hens do their best laying in their first year or so and then egg production begins to decline. If you've given oyster shell to boost calcium, then theres not much else you can do. 

 

CT

Thanks CTKen.  We always have a separate container for oyster shell but I'd read and I thought maybe it would be good to try mixing into their layer pellet.   Thanks for your time!

post #4 of 5

No, don't mix oyster shell into the feed, keep it separate.

You feed layer feed, any other foods?

 

"After quite a while laying, her egg burst (outside of her and onto the wall).  "

Not quite sure I understand this part.

 

It's only one bird with this problem?

What breed is she?

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

They get organic layer pellets (also organic scratch) and then they run free for most of the day.  They're three Rhode Island Reds and I'm pretty sure it's one of the two "Gertrudes."  

 

What I meant about the egg bursting is that it broke as it came out and yolk was splattered on the wall of the nesting area in the tractor.

Thanks for your time!
T


Edited by Gecko Chick - 9/28/15 at 10:31am
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