Adopted a new flock and they're eating my eggs.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by BayBay Peepers, Dec 21, 2013.

  1. BayBay Peepers

    BayBay Peepers Overrun With Chickens

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    Last night I adopted 6 hens from someone moving across country. So there is no chance of returning them. They're getting along fine with my original group except for one small detail that this lady forgot to mention. They eat eggs. Early this morning the new 6 had laid eggs on the ground so I picked them up and put them in a nesting box so I could finish feeding and watering. When I came back one of my buff orpingtons decided she would plop her plump little butt on them. This is nothing new and she always moves to eat in about a half hour so I just went on with my chores. When I came back one of the eggs was gone and there was yolk all over my nesting box. I asked the original owner and then she decides to tell me that there was a time her hens ate an egg that was still half way in one's bum! The only good part about this is I know it's one of the new ones. Now how the heck do I get them to stop while making sure mine don't get caught up in these shenanigans?
     
  2. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Remove them from your flock for a couple of weeks and put them in their own pen. Pick up any eggs they lay as soon as you can so they can't eat them. Place a stack of golf balls or something just as hard in the nesting box. If they peck at the golf balls for a while they might stop trying to eat the eggs. You don't want you first flock learning this bad habit. If that doesn't work you may have to look into other options such as peerless peepers or mustard filled eggs.
     
  3. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

    That is a good idea I never thought of that I just always tried to separate the chickens
    and find out who the culprit was and invite it to dinner but I am defiantly going to try
    your idea [​IMG]


    gander007 [​IMG]
     
  4. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chickens can learn and change sometimes and moving to a new owner is the best time to work out bad habits. I have a rooster that was left on my doorstep because the owner said he was really aggressive and they didn't know what to do with him. He is the best rooster I have ever had, follows me around, wants to be picked up and carried to the coop each night, and defends his hens. His owners had him alone in a small pen near the other free ranging hens and roosters. Wasn't his fault. I also have a co-head hen that was given to me because she ate eggs and was bird aggressive. She is the best broody I have, stays right by the roosters side when not sitting, no longer eats eggs, and rules the coop firmly but never harms one of the other members of the flock. Her owners before didn't give her enough feed, she was riddled with parasites, and had to fight too many other chickens for anything. Again not her fault, I would have done the same in her shoes. When a new bird comes into your flock it is like adopting a foster kid, just because it was bad before doesn't mean that it has to be bad with a fresh start.
     
  5. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

    I will have to agree that a lack of feed is what starts most egg eaters on this
    bad habit ..... X2 in agreement ........
     
  6. BayBay Peepers

    BayBay Peepers Overrun With Chickens

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    Apr 5, 2013
    Wisconsin
    I'm wondering if feed is an issue in this case. This morning I went to pick up the eggs and I noticed the new ones are a bit deformed. I could be wrong all around this is my first year with chickens and before now maybe I was just experiencing beginners luck. We're looking into separating, but with winter in full force we're at a stalemate. I know we should have had an extra living quarter to begin with, but it was so last minute we just dived in. You live and learn I suppose [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Rescues are a little different than raising them from chicks. There are many factors that you just don't know about their prior conditions. More times then not when they are gotten rid of that quickly before a move food has been an issue for them. They are also a little stressed from their whole world changing. With plenty of feed they may correct their habits all on their own, but if they don't, give them something hard to peck at. Who really wants to hit their head on something hard all the time?
     

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