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egg pecking after introduciton of new birds

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

I was down to one hen and just introduced 2 pullets.  My hen lays every other day and since introduction her eggs are broken.  They are pecked and broken but not eaten. I believe I have identified the pullet doing it (egg on beak).  She won't break the pullet eggs, just the hens.

This seems to be about breaking the outsiders eggs and not their own.  I have had this happen before when introducing new birds.  New birds go after the eggs of the original flock.

Have others seen this after introduction?  The selective breaking?

I have read the tips on how to stop egg eating but not sure if it will work since this seems to be an aggressive move.  May have to cull.  Thoughts?

post #2 of 3

I've got the reverse situation.  I've got a 3 year old hen who pecks her own eggs almost every time.  She's done it on and off for the last 2.5 years, but it was usually just a peck through the shell and not the membrane, so I just kept the eggs for myself.  Lately, though, she's been either pecking more aggressively or actually eating the egg.  I've caught her doing it as soon as she's laid the egg and before the bloom is even dry, so I don't know how to stop her.  I've put fake eggs in the nests, but that hasn't helped.

 

She lays 5 eggs a week like clockwork and, up until now I've mostly been able to eat them anyway, and she's the last of my first hens, so I've kept her around.  If it keeps going like it has lately, I can't use the eggs and I don't want her to teach the other hens to do it.

 

Any suggestions?

 

Thanks

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

I may have found a solution.  It hasn't proven out long term yet but is working so far.  I skipped most of the suggestions on how to break egg eating since I've tried them in the past and they didn't work.  My coop had a nest box but it was very open. Half the time my current girls wouldn't even use the nest box. I have since draped a heavy canvas around and above it, creating just a couple slits for them to move through.  I wasn't sure if they would use it but my hopes were that in the darkened nest box, they wouldn't see the eggs to peck.  I did also put in 3 fake eggs to further throw them off if they wanted to peck around in the dark.

The girls took to the nest box right away.  I think they feel safer laying in the dark and are protected. Since shrouding / darkening the nest box, all eggs have been laid in the nest box and not one broken.

It's an easy and cheap solution that the girls seem to enjoy and may be worth a shot.

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