cracked eggs

cousin dave

Chirping
7 Years
Jul 29, 2012
12
0
75
st. louis metro area
My chickens are starting to lay, and they consistintly kick or scratch most of the straw out of the nest box. A few birds must be standing up to lay, and the egg falls to the plywood floor of the nest box and cracks. Anyone have a solution? I thought about a carpet pad under the straw, but they will just scratch it to oblivion.
cousin dave
 

l-o-v-e

Chirping
7 Years
Apr 23, 2012
380
2
91
Missouri
you need to add more straw and if that doesnt work sprinkle cumin in the egg and leave it that should keep the chickens from scratching any more of the eggs
 

Animol

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 8, 2012
72
3
33
England
I have no idea. You could give them layers pellets to strengthen the shells but I don't see why they're cracking that easily. They're designed to fall point down so the whole shell takes the impact and it doesnt crack from small heights. How long have they been laying for?
 

Animol

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 8, 2012
72
3
33
England
It might be just because they have started laying and have weaker egg shells so I wouldn't worry about it unless it persists for more that a couple weeks for the ones that are already laying.
 

mickey328

Songster
7 Years
May 4, 2012
1,380
93
168
Northern Colorado
Some of ours like lots of straw, and some like nearly none...they're constantly "rearranging the furniture" in the nest box. We finally took a piece of a welcome mat and stuck it in the bottom. It's the kind that has the plastic bristles for wiping feet. It's tough so they can scratch to their hearts' content and not do any damage. Only once have they ever dislodged it. When it gets icky, we take it out and hose it off. The bristles provide good support for the egg so even if it falls from a stand or gets rolled around, it's rarely damaged. It's worked extremely well for us.

You might also provide extra calcium for them...either crushed oyster shell or you can even grind their eggshells and make them available. Chickens are pretty good about knowing what they need. We keep a container of grit and one of shells topped off and available for them so they can help themselves to what they need. Some of our shells are downright difficult to break into, LOL.
 

mickey328

Songster
7 Years
May 4, 2012
1,380
93
168
Northern Colorado
It's a good idea to offer calcium and grit as free choice regardless...it works better than having it mixed in the food. If they free range and have access to grit sized stones, you wouldn't need to supplement, but extra calcium is generally a good idea. Even if it's in the feed, some girls need more than others.
 

Havenhill Farn

Chirping
6 Years
Apr 23, 2013
190
2
71
Horton,Al
I am having the same issue, when one of my hens lays an egg the pointy end gets cracked. I like the welcome mat idea and i might try it. My girls are on laying mash and oyster shells and this didn't start happening until about a week ago. they are barely cracked but I haven't been keeping the eggs, I probably could but I give them to my pot belly pig,she could probably use the extra calcium since she is pregnant(surprise surprise).
 

MANNA-PRO

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