Clean Coop=Clean Nest=Clean Eggs That Don't Need Washing

BigBlueHen53

We will get through this... together!
Premium Feather Member
Mar 5, 2019
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SE Missouri, USA
I'm sure it's well-intentioned, but one other thing I've learned in the years I've been a BYC member is that the folks on this site are from all over the world and live such vastly different lives that no one solution, idea, or piece of advice fits everyone. Knowing how to design and maintain a coop/run in one specific location does not mean that it will work for everyone. Example: Sand is great, but maybe there isn't any available where you live. Maybe it's crazy cold where you live and your birds need warmer substrate. Maybe it's crazy hot where you live and sand retains too much heat. Maybe you live in a rainforest, and there's no way to keep your birds/eggs clean when it's the wet season.

Saying "Hey - I've found a way that works for me. Maybe it will work for you, too" is a lot different than saying "Hey - your eggs are only dirty because you don't know how to maintain and design coops."

Reread this part here: "The only reason eggs get poop on them is if the chickens bring it in on their feet (from a dirty coop) or poop while laying (rare)."

Those are definitely not the only reasons eggs get dirty. And much of the original post is pretty smug, tbh.
Very true, thank you, @Aunt Angus. Sand won't work here (it would get washed away) and would be (a) expensive and (b) really difficult to get into our coop due to obstacles in the way. We use shredded paper in our nests, which is free, easy to handle, and keeps our eggs quite clean. But I still wash the eggs before use. Maybe I'm OCD, I dono, shrug. :confused:
 

morsekathan

Songster
10 Years
May 12, 2011
115
106
191
Maryland
I don't, as a rule, wash my eggs, not in 10 years of chicken keeping. Sometimes an egg will be poopy or have a little something stuck to it, then I wash it, but that's a rare egg - maybe 1 or 2 a month. Occasionally a hen will lay on the floor of the coop and that egg is usually not that clean. But after figuring that out, I created a little spot on the floor for them to lay and I keep it clean for the hen that wants to use it. I tell my customers that the eggs aren't washed. They can do what they like once they get them.
 

PhilSanchez

Songster
5 Years
Mar 13, 2016
135
195
156
North east Georgia mountains
Ok, ok, folks! Don't kiss your eggs if you fear salmonella!!! I will continue to give mine a little peck of joy as I carry them in at daybreak! I kiss my dog, too, and dogs roll in and eat poop. Don't kiss your dog if you fear salmonella. Don't kiss your baby, either. Children are little germ magnets.
Wash your eggs if you want, but read up on how washing, especially soaking, can push bacteria right through the porous shell. By law, you don't have to wash nest run eggs according to the Federal Code. You might have to in your state.
Sheesh! All I wanted to say is that a clean nest produces clean eggs. Over and Out. Don't need this. Bye. Going outside to play with my clean chickens and maybe kiss all of them. And a dog or two.
 

Padfoot22

Songster
5 Years
Apr 30, 2016
63
148
136
How do you train multiple chickens from using the same favorite box? I have 5 boxes but only 2 get used and can’t stand there all day to make sure they are using the other boxes. I put golf balls in all of them. Sometimes I find gollfballs from the other boxes rolled into the coveted boxes. One chicken has randomly been dropping eggs in the coop while waiting for the coveted laying boxes rather than use the empty ones. 😓 Those definitely have to get washed.
 

Judy Todd

Songster
Dec 27, 2017
216
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Yacolt Wa.
If your coop and nest is clean, your eggs will be clean and seldom if ever need washing. The only reason eggs get poop on them is if the chickens bring it in on their feet (from a dirty coop) or poop while laying (rare). I've collected and eaten or sold about 400 eggs in the past couple months. They come from the nest spotless and shiny, protected with a lovely bloom, ready for the carton or to sit in a wire basket on my counter. (Unwashed chicken eggs stay good a month unrefrigerated. Washed eggs must be refrigerated immediately.) Sometimes as I carry my treasured harvest from the chicken house, the eggs are so pretty I might even give one a kiss! I've never washed any eggs yet, either before I cook them or before I sell them.
The way to achieve this is easy:
1. Never let chickens spend the night in the nest box
2. Keep fresh straw, grass hay, or other bedding in the nest.
3. Immediately remove it if a chicken does happen to poop in the nest (this is rare).
4. Have at least 3-4 nest boxes per chicken and train them to use them all, not crowd into one. Whether you have 3 chickens or 300, the traffic per box and ease of keeping them clean will be the same.
If you let your hens free range, which I do, in the rainy PNW, you will get soiled eggs, not every one, but enough that will need washing. No way around it. Coop is very clean, including a drop board that is scraped every day. Still get soiled eggs, a few every day.
Also, the claim, training the hens to use all nest boxes, good luck. I have 5 nest boxes for 15 hens, and they always use the same 2 or 3. Guess I am not very good at training my girls! I hav even tried putting an fake egg in each, works for a ffew days and then back to their fav 3.
 

Outta Here

Songster
May 17, 2021
462
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If you let your hens free range, which I do, in the rainy PNW, you will get soiled eggs, not every one, but enough that will need washing. No way around it. Coop is very clean, including a drop board that is scraped every day. Still get soiled eggs, a few every day.
Also, the claim, training the hens to use all nest boxes, good luck. I have 5 nest boxes for 15 hens, and they always use the same 2 or 3. Guess I am not very good at training my girls! I hav even tried putting an fake egg in each, works for a ffew days and then back to their fav 3.

My 13 chickens free range all day long. Of course sometimes they step in mud or poop. Perhaps the sand in their inner pen where the nest boxes are scours it off first.
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Outta Here

Songster
May 17, 2021
462
1,596
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I have always believed forums were not conducive to a peaceful life, but I thought a nice friendly chicken-raising forum would be different and people would be courteous. Nope. This is my last posing ever. Don't. Need.This.
I have raised hundreds of chickens over 45 years in snowy climates and hot climates; I've gathered my share of poopy eggs that needed washing or tossing. When I realized a few tweaks in design and maintenance could change that, I was excited to share this epiphany to my "friends" on BYC, especially for those who might just be designing their unbuilt coops.
Wow, I got accused of being smug and of insinuating all people who sometimes have poopy eggs are idiots! I am basically called a liar from people who say my idea works in theory but not in practice. What can I say--shall I send pictures of my unwashed, clean eggs from free-ranging chickens in the cartons ready for sale every day?
For all those who throughout my interaction on BYC answered helpfully, thoughtfully, and civilly, even if you disagreed, thank you. I wish you blessings in your chicken raising endeavors.
To those who will continue to ruin someone else's enjoyment of this or other forums through rudeness, know that I won't not ever open this website again. I quit letting those types bother me in seventh grade. I will be enjoying my beautiful, tame chickens clucking among the wildflowers of our 80 remote, private, peaceful acres of sunshine... Bye y'all!
 
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MTKitty

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Aug 14, 2021
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MT
Tone doesn’t translate well through the written word, particularly where things are written and posted as quickly as on the internet.

I watched this thread with some interest and saw things posted that made me wince. Perhaps, if one takes things too close to heart, it is better to not visit. There are threads I’ve abandoned because of how I felt reading them or because I spent too much time letting the words live rent-free in my brain.
 

Aunt Angus

Crossing the Road
Jul 16, 2018
6,307
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Nevada County, CA
Tone doesn’t translate well through the written word, particularly where things are written and posted as quickly as on the internet.

I watched this thread with some interest and saw things posted that made me wince. Perhaps, if one takes things too close to heart, it is better to not visit. There are threads I’ve abandoned because of how I felt reading them or because I spent too much time letting the words live rent-free in my brain.
True words. I winced, too, and it did bother me. And then I wrote and winced at what I wrote.
 

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