does the water test really work????

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by scrapmom5, Aug 13, 2008.

  1. scrapmom5

    scrapmom5 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2008
    Utah
    We have to go on an egg hunt to find our duck's eggs. She won't lay them in the nest box. I found two today in the mud and one two days ago. I wonder if there is more hiding in my yard. My question is does the water test really work? If the egg sinks it is good, right? If it does really work, why do the bad eggs float?

    A second question is if a chicken lays an egg and it cracks the shell but leaves the membrane intact can you still eat the egg?

    And since I am on the egg laying subject, how do you convince a runner duck and a cochin that the best place to lay eggs is IN the nest boxes and not in the mud or rocks.

    Thanks.
     
  2. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    Yes, the water test works. They float because the air sack inside gets larger with age. When its bad, the air sack is so large it floats.

    I wouldn't eat an egg that's been in the mud or really mucked up even if the membrane is intacts. Bacteria can still get into it.

    Well, I had and EEer who always laid on the floor. I couldn't get her to lay in the box, then one day my DH went out to collect eggs and didn't know to check the floor and SQUASH he smashed the egg, right in front of all the chickens. They all ran over to his foot to see, and she has NEVER laid on the floor again. [​IMG]
     
  3. scrapmom5

    scrapmom5 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2008
    Utah
    The mucked up eggs have never been cracked. Just ugly. Apparently my duck likes to lay in mud.

    The cochin lays her eggs in the rocks and one was chipped. It was otherwise clean. Would you eat the chipped egg?

    I guess I could accidentally step on my cochin's egg if you think it would help. Yesterday I put her in the nest box with her egg. I showed her the egg while explaining to her that it needs to be layed in the box. I then put it underneath her so that she could feel it under her while she sat in the box. After this discussion, I then told her that if she laid in the box I would give her a very special treat. She bokked, looked at the egg under her and jumped out of the box. Today we still have not gotten an egg from her. I guess I either scared her or she is finding another spot to lay it. [​IMG]
     
  4. keljonma

    keljonma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 12, 2007
    8A East Texas
    According to the USDA: "The test of freshness that involves seeing if an egg floats in a glass of (salt)-water is not a reliable test. In fact, this test has no relationship to the freshness of shell eggs. While eggs do take in air as they age, the size of the air cell varies from egg to egg when they are laid. Therefore, a freshly laid egg and an older egg might react very similarly,
     
  5. scrapmom5

    scrapmom5 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2008
    Utah
    Is there a reliable way to determine if my duck eggs are good? I look really well but wonder if an egg was hidining for a day or two. I would hate to eat, or even worse, give the egg to someone else to eat if it were a bad egg. Please help me find a way.
     
  6. Kesta

    Kesta Pie Crust Malfunction

    Jul 31, 2008
    houston tx
    a good way to tell is to see if the eggs still warm. if its cold its propably bad if its still warm from the ducks ahem bottom its pretty fresh and hasnt gone bad
     
  7. clarkestep

    clarkestep Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2008
    N Metro Atlanta
    I'm totally a newbie, but I say, no, the float test does NOT work. I say this from personal experience just a few weeks ago when my nieghbor told me to crack the eggs he gave me separately because he didn't collect them for 3 days. I did the float test and they sunk AND stunk. That's just my experience.
     
  8. keljonma

    keljonma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 12, 2007
    8A East Texas
    Quote:If one of our hens lays an egg in the morning, and it doesn't get taken out of the nest until 5 pm, it is cold. It doesn't mean that it isn't fresh. So I don't agree that that is a good test to see if an egg is bad.

    I think if you gather eggs daily you should be fine. We have gone out of town overnight and gathered and eaten the eggs the next day. If you have any doubts about an egg's freshness, scramble it up and feed it back to the flock.
     
  9. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2008
    South Central KY
    Unless the weather is really hot, an egg can be left in a nest for a day or three and still be fine. In fact, in some countries, eggs aren't even refrigerated. Eggs will keep just fine at normal room temp for about a month.

    If you have doubts about how long ago an egg was laid, you can keep it separate, and crack it into a cup or bowl to see if it's ok. If it isn't, you'll know because it will look nothing like a good, fresh egg. And you didn't spoil the pancake batter, because you cracked it into a bowl. I do that anyway, so I can pick out shell chips that fall in. I hardly ever get a bad one, though.

    I wash my eggs, and haven't ever had a fresh one float. That's probably a pretty rare occurrence, unless you have a hen who for some reason produces eggs with larger-than-normal air cells. I've had a few tip up a bit on one end, and on closer examination, I find they're cracked. I've had ONE egg sink that was bad. (In over 15 years) It was one my dog brought up from who knows where, and left in the driveway. I took it in and washed it. It sank, just like a normal egg. But it kept rolling to one side, like one side was heavier than the other. So I cracked it into a cup to see what was up. It had apparently been out in the hot sun for awhile, the yolk was partially cooked on one side and stuck to the shell. The egg wasn't actually spoiled or rotten, it didn't stink at all. But I tossed it, just the same.

    Any eggs I'm not sure of, like when I find a hidden nest somewhere, I keep separate from the ones I sell. The only ones I sell are those I gather daily from the nest boxes. When I wash them, if there are any floaters, I toss them. The ones that tip up, I hard boil. They've always turned out fine. The ones hat appear normal and fresh, I still keep only for home use, and so far, they've all turned out to be fine, except that one the dog brought up.

    Just my own experience. You can candle eggs, too, and usually a bad egg will not look like a good one. It takes some practice, though, and if you have brown eggs, like I do, it can be hard to tell much.
     

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