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Chickens eating eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by DesiLee13, Nov 16, 2016.

  1. DesiLee13

    DesiLee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2016
    Kansas City, MO
    My chickens have started eating their eggs. The hens had gotten up on a shelf and eggs rolled off giving the chickens the taste of raw eggs. I fixed it so they cannot get up on the shelf, but they are now breaking eggs in the lay boxes a few times a week. I am not sure which ones are doing it. They get a mix of layer feed and all flock feed, and have access to oyster shell at all times. Is there anything else I can do to get them to stop the behavior?
     
  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Ceramic eggs in the nesting boxes, combined with removing eggs as soon as possible after they have been laid, could help. It could take a while for them to no longer associate breaking eggs with a reward. From what I have read, some members favour removing egg-eaters from the flock - catching the offenders red-handed is easier said, than done.
     
  3. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    Are the shells on all of your eggs nice and strong, or do you have a hen who is laying weak shelled eggs? How deep is the bedding in your nest boxes?
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2016
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Africa - near the equator

    Good questions
     
  5. lacrandall

    lacrandall New Egg

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    Sep 3, 2016
    Not sure if this applies here but...it appears one of my barred rocks laid an egg and may have stepped on it. I couldn't figure out what was taking her so long when she showed up in the play yard with egg yolk on her beak. I cleaned up that nest box and put in fresh nesting material. Now she is back in there just sitting. Is she wondering where her egg is, or does she think it's there somewhere so she's sitting there waiting? Not sure what to do. By the way...when she came to me in the play yard she did the egg squat when I touched her back.
     
  6. lacrandall

    lacrandall New Egg

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    Sep 3, 2016
    Update...the BR with egg on her face apparently stepped on another chicken's egg in the near darkness, but decided to sit there anyway. After I had removed her and she went to the play yard I cleaned that nest box. She then went back into that same box and laid her own almost pink egg.
     
  7. DesiLee13

    DesiLee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2016
    Kansas City, MO
    The shells are nice and hard. It could be that the bedding is getting to thin, because they always shove it over to one side of the lay box. I will try to make a point of smoothing it out each time.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Post a pic of your nests?
    Is crowding and issue....how many birds/how much space???
     
  9. lacrandall

    lacrandall New Egg

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    Sep 3, 2016
    I figured out what happened. Her breed sister Molly had been in there just before her, but I thought Molly was in a different nest box. Apparently she had moved to the one where the egg got broken. So when Nellie walked into the same box Molly had just used she stepped on Molly's egg got curious enough to taste it then decided to sit on it. When I lifted Nellie up and discovered the broken egg I cleaned that box and refilled it with the straw and pine shavings while Nellie went to the play yard. As soon as I was done Nellie went back in and layed her first egg then went back to the play yard. No other broken eggs since. Thanks for everyone's input!
     
  10. DesiLee13

    DesiLee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2016
    Kansas City, MO
    Sorry, I haven't grabbed a pic yet. I have 11 birds, and only 8 are hens (due to 2 of my so called hens turning out to be roosters). There are 9 lay boxes in a 8 x 12 coop. The current outside run is 12 x 12. The seem to all pick the same box to lay in, so I think due to them moving all the bedding to one side they were crushing the eggs. I made a point of getting it spread back out evenly the last few days, and I have not had any broken eggs. I will try to get a pic tomorrow when I am cleaning the coop out.
     
    1 person likes this.

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