EE question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by HillCountryTX, Oct 4, 2015.

  1. HillCountryTX

    HillCountryTX Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 12, 2014
    Hi all -

    I'm a first time flock keeper with a mixed flock of 12. Got them as day old chicks at the end of April, which makes them all approx. 23 weeks. One of my Buff Orps started laying about 10 days ago - one egg a day until today (guess she needed a break!). One of my EE's followed - about six days now, very pretty green eggs. She was laying in the very back corner of the coop run, on the floor behind the roosts and under the nesting boxes, but we were able to fish them out.

    Today I found a green egg in one of the nesting boxes and just assumed the EE had figured it out - yay! And then tonight, I realized that the new egg is actually a different shade of green and a bigger, different shape than the others. Here's a pic - yesterday's egg (more on the olive green spectrum) is on top, today's egg (true pale green) is on the bottom, Buff Orp's on the right.


    I was going to post anyway about my second EE, because she has developed no comb to speak of, has no wattles, and isn't displaying any of the squatting/wing spreading behavior the others do when I approach them. She is definitely the boss of the flock - keeps everyone in line, first to the food, chases the Buff Brahmas and Speckled Sussex away (really can't seem to stand them) when I bring treats out, etc. Here is a bad phone photo - she's docile enough when I am able to pick her up, but she's not terribly social and getting her to stand still long enough for me to grab her isn't easy.


    So what do you think? Could she be laying even without a fully developed comb/wattles? Could the new egg be hers? Does that egg look like it came from a different hen?

    Thanks in advance for your help!

  2. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Oh yes, it is probably her egg! Her comb and wattles are going to be small due to her breed and her individual genes. The color often catches up later, becoming redder after she begins to lay. Egg color and size is an individual trade mark, so two hens probably laid those two green eggs.

    The reverse is also true. I have a hen in the full throes of molt, and her comb is still a deep, fertile red. As molt proceeds, her comb will lose its color, and shrink down to a pathetic version of its fertile size.

    Hormones determine the color and condition of the comb, and hormones take a while to accumulate or dissipate.
  3. HillCountryTX

    HillCountryTX Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 12, 2014
    Thanks so much! That's exciting - three out of the 12 doing their jobs, then. :D And so pleased to know she's "normal" re her comb and wattles. I was starting to get concerned...
  4. dfalchek

    dfalchek Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 20, 2014
    Scranton, Pa
    Although EE are mixed of multiple, different breeds,, they usually don't have waddles -- at least no significant ones. The comb is supposed to be slight, a pea or rose comb. Because EEs are mixes, you are probably experiences some differences in them, assuming they are from different clutches. My EEs and BR lay 18 or 19 weeks. One orp may lay at 20, another at 40. Sounds like yours may be focussing on being boss. I'm sure you enjoy your EEs. They are excellent foragers, friendly, non-aggressive.
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    The bird in the pic has a very pale comb, I wouldn't think she is laying but she might be, might want to check her pelvic points to determine if she's laying.
    You only have 2 EE's?
    The bigger egg could be a double yolker from the first EE layer, double yolkers can be a bit different in shape and color.

    My notes on signs of onset of lay---I've found the pelvic points to be the most accurate.
    If you touch their back they will hunker down on the ground, then shake their tail feathers when they get back up.
    This shows they are sexually mature and egg laying is close at hand.

    Combs and Wattles:
    Plump, shiny red - usually means laying.
    Shriveled, dryish looking and pale - usually means not laying.
    Tho I have found that the combs and wattles can look full and red one minute then pale back out the next due to exertion or excitement, can drive ya nuts when waiting for a pullet to lay!

    2 bony points(pelvic bones) on either side of vent:
    Less than 2 fingertip widths apart usually means not laying.
    More than 2 fingertip widths apart usually means laying.

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