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Double-Yolkers and Grain?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Jrose, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. Jrose

    Jrose Songster

    Jun 6, 2013
    This is only my second summer/winter with chickens.

    This last winter I added 4 NHR hens to my flock just as winter was kicking off. From the start I was getting at least 1 double yolk egg every week from the new girls. I was also getting the odd "no yolk" eggs, and very frequent wrinkled/thin/deformed eggs.

    At the start of spring I lost one of the NHR girls to internal laying. After she died I didn't get anymore mutant eggs. I chalked it up to a genetic defect or something- they must've all been from her!

    Well, that same winter I had started feeding my girls layer feed every day and gave them a seed block since the ground was caked in 8" of frozen snow. They are normally free ranging on acreage and eating kitchen scraps- I don't usually give any grains. Didn't think anything of it. Once spring hit, the grain stopped (same time as my hen died) and it was back to free-ranging.

    I had ZERO double yolk eggs last summer, and ZERO this summer. Both summers were grain-free.

    Now it's cooling down again and I'm back to tossing grain out once a day. Suddenly I've gotten 2 double-yolk eggs between 3 NHR hens (the only ones that lay brown in my flock) in the last month since starting the grain again. I've also gotten several wrinkly and deformed eggs from them since starting grains again.

    Has anyone else noticed a corrilation with this? I'm just feeding 16% layer feed from D&B, but saving up to switch to non-GMO feed.

  2. heidisue

    heidisue Chirping

    Jan 28, 2013
    Marana, Arizona
    That's interesting, subbing to see what others say... Oyster shell might help - what's the calcium content on the feed ? Or, maybe dehydration? Is it harder for them to get water when it is cooler?
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2013
  3. Jrose

    Jrose Songster

    Jun 6, 2013
    They have a heated water bucket in the winter. During this time of year they have a few three-gallon tubs of water in their pen, and they free range with full access to the irrigation ditch.

    I have calcium grit out all the time, they peck now and again. They actually get to eat all of their eggshells once my kitchen compost bucket gets emptied out into the compost pile. They always go for crushed eggshells first! It only makes sense to me that they would do this naturally after their chicks hatch to re-digest the nutrients. I have no egg eating problems either.

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