Brown egg, Brown egg, Brown egg, White egg?


5 Years
Mar 16, 2016
NW Pennsylvania
My hens just recently started laying or should I say one of my hens started laying and has been laying brown eggs for the last 3 days but today I got a white egg today in the box and a brown one cracked all over the coop so I don't think she made it to the box but where did a white egg come from? I have RIR, Production Reds, Plymouth rock and black sex links which are all brown egg layers that are 20 weeks old. I do have buff orpingtons but there only 16 weeks (barely old enough) I don't think they would lay it but it's either the orpingtons or the Barred rock I would believe there the only ones that do light brown everyone else is dark brown. I have pictures if needed. Anybody have experience with a random egg that just magically appeared wrong color and all?
Not unusual to have thin/soft shelled egg with new layers.
It can take up to a months or so for things to smooth out.
Meanwhile, eggs everywhere, some of them can be rather funky looking, soft or thin shelled, huge double yolked eggs.

As to the white egg...a brown egg is a white shell with brown coating.
Sometimes the 'spray booth' gets glitchy and the coating can be lighter, darker, or absent.
Again, not unusual with new layers....nothing to worry about if you get a few funky eggs.
Gotcha. Just makes me wonder where a white one came from if a brown layer could lay a white one or if I have a mystery chicken running around that I don't know about
That’s not unusual at all, even after they have been laying a long time, but it happens more often when a pullet first starts to lay. Her internal egg laying machine has a lot of parts so it’s not surprising that a pullet just starting out has to work some of the bugs out of her system. But even established layers have a hick-up every now and then.

There are exceptions, there are always exceptions with chickens, but in general the last half hour of the egg laying process is when the hen puts a brown coating on her egg, if she lays an egg with a brown coating. The egg shell underneath is white. If you look inside the egg when you crack it and remove the membrane, you can see the base color. If something happens to cause the hen to lay the egg early, it can be really light or even white.

Sometimes a hen (or especially a pullet just starting to lay) will lay two eggs in one day. An extra yolk gets released so a second egg develops. The hen makes a certain amount of pigment to color the egg or a certain amount of shell material so the second egg may be really light colored or thin shelled. With pullets be patient and give them a chance to get the bugs out of their system. With older hens, as long as it is not a regular thing, it’s not a big deal.

Some people mistakenly believe that because a certain breed normally lays a certain color and shade of egg that all hens of that breed lay exactly the same shade of egg. It doesn’t work that way. The genetics of egg shell color are pretty complicated. While breeds do have tendencies in this you can get a wide range of egg shell color/shade from different hens of the same breed. Don’t count on the shade of the egg to tell you which pullet laid it. It can be a clue, that’s all it is.

Something else about egg shell shade. When a pullet first starts to lay or a hen starts to lay after a molt is when you will get the darkest eggs. With pullets the first eggs are generally pretty small. If the pullet makes a normal amount of pigment it goes on a smaller egg so it will look darker. The pullet shells can be pretty thick too since a regular amount of shell material goes on a smaller egg.

The brown color is made from dead recycled red blood cells. These are dying and new ones being made all the time so the pullet or hen has a steady supply of the raw materials needed for the brown pigment. But the hen stores up some other material needed for that process while she is molting. That other material gradually gets used up as she lays, so the eggs typically get lighter the longer she lays. It’s normal for mine to be laying some pretty light eggs just before they molt compared to the nice dark ones they lay just after the molt. It’s a gradual change, you may not even notice it until they molt and start laying a really dark egg.

Probably a lot more information than you wanted to know, but a white egg from a brown egg layer is not a surprise at all.
Probably a lot more information than you wanted to know, but a white egg from a brown egg layer is not a surprise at all.
....but your 'more information' is always good information.

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