another soft problem

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Ron bald, Apr 25, 2016.

  1. Ron bald

    Ron bald New Egg

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    Apr 17, 2016
    We have 6 bardrocks they have been laying for almost a year. Lately we have one girl laying a egg that's very thin and soft on the top. Either she or one of her sisters are in the habit of eating the egg and the only thing left is bits of the shell. We have tried extra calcium, Doesn't seem to help and am afraid to give them too much. Also afraid the other girls might get in the habit of dinning on eggs. I'm going to try and add some vitamins next time I go to town. Just wondering if anyone has had the same thing.
    Ron
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC!!

    What and how exactly are you feeding?
    What 'extra calcium' did you give them?
     
  3. SonnyLTPI

    SonnyLTPI Out Of The Brooder

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    a temporary seperation in a scratch pen helped when i had this problem
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I would also be interested in what form of "extra calcium" you gave your hen.

    I have three older hens in my flock of twenty chickens, age six and seven, who have problems with shell-less eggs or thin shelled eggs. I recently learned about giving Caltrate people calcium, a half a pill per day following a defective egg and until the eggs are normal again.

    It has worked very well with the six-year old, and has improved the eggs of the seven-year olds. One now lays mostly normal eggs, while the other has graduated to laying thin-shelled eggs from her former shell-less eggs.

    You don't want to feed this form of calcium any longer than is needed to arrive at normal or near normal eggs since there is a danger of calcium overload. But it has helped when feeding plain oyster shell hasn't.
     
  5. Ron bald

    Ron bald New Egg

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    Thanks for getting back to us,We are new to this site and learning as we go. We are feeding them a commercial crumble that has calcium in it. The extra calcium we have been feeding them is more oyster shell available in a feeder we also grind up oyster shell and put in there water and grind up cooked egg shell and oyster shell and add it to there food. We are at a point that if we can't fix this we might have to do something drastic. We have them banded so we know which one she is.
    Thanks Ron
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    There are other vitamins and minerals that are needed to absorb the calcium...sorry, don't know the details off the top of my head....
    ....but just adding calcium often doesn't do the trick.

    The calcium in the layer feed should be enough, with oyster/egg shell in a separate container if they need it.
    Calcium in the water is overkill IMO, especially if that's the only water they have available(tho not sure if it could be detrimental),
    and oyster/egg shell should never be added to the feed.

    If the other hens are laying adequately hard shelled eggs, then the one hen may have some kind of nutrient uptake issue, or be ill, or stressed somehow.

    Are you giving any other foods/treats?
    Layer feed can be on the low end of protein levels, any other foods can dilute that and overall balanced nutrition/health decreased.
     
  7. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    x2! It sounds like way too much of a good thing, and a very unbalanced mineral mix. Layer feed with oyster shell on the side, or an all flock diet (I feed Flock Raiser) with oyster shell on the side, is best. Some older birds, especially high egg producers, and any with an unbalanced diet, can produce thin shelled eggs. Any stress or illness can do the same. Ground egg shells will be metabolized too fast to contribute to the shell in high producing hens (there's research to support this) so oyster shell is the best side dish. Treating individual hens with supplemental calcium can be done, but it's tricky, and unless she is then able to manage, not a long term solution. Mary
     
  8. Ron bald

    Ron bald New Egg

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    Thanks for the advice going to stop adding shells to the water and try just shells on the side. Got some chicken vitamins today and going to try some yogourt that worked for a friend. As for a balanced diet we give them lots of greens from the garden we even have a row of kale just for them. As much fun it is having the girls when you run up against something like this it takes the fun out of it.
    Thanks Ron
     
  9. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    I would back off on all the extra greens and stuff, and concentrate on feeding a good balanced diet. Mary
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    What is the brand of crumbles you use?
    That should have all the vitamins and minerals they need.


    Agrees with Mary....go back to the basics, good balanced feed-free fed, plain water, and oyster shells on the side.
    Do that for a couple weeks.....with maybe just a little kale for your hand feeding pleasure.
     

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