1 hen of 11 laying eggs like this

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Courtknee3R, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. Courtknee3R

    Courtknee3R New Egg

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    [​IMG]

    My camera battery is dead and the charger has been MIA since we moved 2 months ago so I borrowed this picture from the 'Common Egg Quality Problems' page. It is the closest to the problem we are having. 1 hen out of 11 is laying eggs like this, but the discoloration and texture issue is just on the ends, often times the shell is so thin that its breaks at the end into the air space, but the membrane is in tact. We don't eat these eggs, just toss them back for the hens to eat, I figured it was just stress of moving, heat, cheap feed that we WERE using, etc and so I changed the feed to higher quality and let it be. Today my daughter came in and said that the spot was bigger, still on the end and and a bit softer (not shell-less soft) but soft enough that it was slightly misshapen.
    The Egg Problems article indicates cause as Stress in Flock, Change in lighting, or Bronchitis...

    My hens have a larger coop, 8 nesting boxes and a huge enclosed yard, plus they are free range on 6 acres (though they prefer my garden bed) during the day, and I haven't noticed any pecking within the flock, so I assume it isn't stress .
    Lighting shouldn't be an issue as its still summer

    That leaves Bronchitis, but it's been laying this way for several weeks (only had the flock a few months) and they all look like happy healthy hens to me. I have no idea which hen is laying this egg.

    Any advice?
    Do I just let it be? do I medicate the entire flock? I can't quarantine since I have no idea which hen it is.

    Second and probably related question, all the shells seem thinner than our old flock. Any ideas? I keep thinking that free range hens with good layer crumbles and corn should be good to go in diet.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2014
  2. lightchick

    lightchick Overrun With Chickens

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    Sorry for a late response! How are her eggs now? I wouldn't throw the eggs back for them to eat.
    Your hens could start eating all your eggs!
     
  3. Courtknee3R

    Courtknee3R New Egg

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    I am actually going through an allergy treatment that requires me to avoid contact with eggs... ridiculous, I know, so my daughter has been taking care of them. I think things are improving because she hasn't been reporting it as often, but its also possible that with as many eggs that get dropped (little brother demands that he is old enough to help) between the coop and the fridge that its still happening. We have adjusted their diet and are hoping it helps. I have less stress after finding that a chicken with infectious bronchitis actually acts sick, while my birds are very delightful.

    I have always been afraid to let them eat their broken eggs, but I have seen very little evidence of them possibly eating eggs that aren't already broken. Coop is on a lava flow, so like I said, a lot of eggs break, but the kids are still learning life, so its all worth it. I try to make sure the eggs no longer resemble an egg before letting them eat it.

    Thanks for taking the time to respond:)
     
  4. hollys chooks

    hollys chooks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Just to cover all possibilities - are they getting enough calcium? I know you changed to a higher quality diet but you didn't mention calcium specifically.

    Another possibility that I haven't found much info on but have had problems with is toxic plants. I haven't worked out what plant was the problem (there are a few candidates in my yard) but something was causing my hens to gradually lose condition and the first indicator was thinning shells. I have since fenced off a safe area for my flock and the ones that have survived have improved in condition. Check your yard that any plants are ok to eat.

    I agree with the advice to not give the soft shell eggs to your hens as they are. If you boil or scramble them first and give them to them in a form that doesn't look like an egg they won't learn to recognize an egg as something to eat.
     
  5. Courtknee3R

    Courtknee3R New Egg

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    We have recently added oyster shell to their feed. We are on 6 acres, so there is no knowing about what plants, but I will do better at monitoring the eggs and see if the changes we have made help, if not I'll keep them penned (there enclosure is quite large) up for a while to determine if it is a plant.
    Thanks!
     
  6. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    My Coop
    When you say you have "added it to their feed" - are you mixing the oyster shell in to the rations directly? With oyster shell it is better, imo, to offer it free-choice and separate from the feed ration so that each bird can take, or leave, what they want.
     
  7. Courtknee3R

    Courtknee3R New Egg

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    yeah, I worded that wrong. we offer the oyster shell separately from the layer crumble
     

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