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EEEEWWWWW! What is this inside this egg? Calcium, grit, insect eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by SeaChick, May 18, 2010.

  1. SeaChick

    SeaChick Songster

    Apr 25, 2007
    Southern Maine
    I'm not normally very squeamish about egg inclusions, and will happily eat blood spots or weird white mucousy eggs. But this morning I found something really weird. Inside the egg, in the white, was a small glob of what looked like tiny balls. Like a cluster of insect eggs (yucky!). Grey in color, distinct ball-shaped things in a mass about 1/4" across. A few single specs elsewhere in the white. I dug them out with a spoon and they don't feel terribly hard and grainy, but not mushy either.

    The only thing chicken-related I can think of that looks like this is when you get those rough eggs with calcium deposits on them.. the ones that look like tiny balls on the egg? This looked a little like that, but INSIDE an otherwise normal-looking egg. And not attached to the shell, just the white.

    Has anyone seen anything like this? Do I need to be concerned?

    By the way, I did eat the egg... so I'm hoping it's not something really gross or dangerous!
  2. AccioSarah

    AccioSarah Songster

    Apr 21, 2010
    San Juan, Puerto Rico
    I have absolutely no idea... but I'm curious to find out.
    [​IMG] I'll be watching this topic....

    and at the very least- but post gave you a bump!
  3. klf73

    klf73 Mad Scientist

    Jun 1, 2008
    hmm, never had that happen, I too will be interested to see if anyone knows [​IMG]
  4. Jess N Jeff

    Jess N Jeff Songster

    Oct 25, 2009
    South San Diego, Cali
    How did the egg taste? Did you take a picture of it?
    Last edited: May 18, 2010
  5. feathersnuggles

    feathersnuggles Songster

    Sep 4, 2009
    They are calcium deposits, or calcium beads. It happens now and then, to one of my birds. Most of the time those excess calcium beads end up on the outside shell, but rarely I'll find them inside the egg. Not a problem.
  6. SeaChick

    SeaChick Songster

    Apr 25, 2007
    Southern Maine
    Yay! I knew someone would know. Thanks, feathersnuggles!

    So: does this indicate anything I can correct? One of our other hens has been having a lot of eggs with calcium deposits, lately, as well.
    We feed balanced organic layer pellets (Blue Seal), and we provide free choice oyster shell. The birds free range all day, too.
  7. feathersnuggles

    feathersnuggles Songster

    Sep 4, 2009
    Me too, just 1 of my hens has all the shell problems this spring. She's had soft shells, heavy warty calcium deposited shells, with those beads on the outside (and sometimes inside). The whole flock just turned 1 year old, beginning of May.

    1. What I did, was make sure the oyster shell dish was kept topped off & FULL, always. I stopped letting it get down to the powder, before refilling it. Also, I checked to be sure my OS was well-flaked. If you purchase yours at a feedstore, you should be fine. (I've known people who take real oyster shells from the beach, and try to smash them up with a hammer for their birds -- which IMO isn't really what the birds can eat very well.)

    2. Also, I added cod liver oil (for Vit. D) to their diet, a teaspoon per week. Vit. D is required for proper calcium synthesis.

    3. And, I made sure they always get raw ACV in their waterer (non-metal waterer so there's no reaction with the vinegar).

    4. Plus, for the hen with the shell problems, when she started laying soft shelled eggs, I gave her an emergency calcium dose of 1/2 crushed Tums mixed with some plain active-culture yogurt.
    Sounds like you don't give many "treats", which is good. I've learned by experience the extra treats can sometimes cause an imbalance with their calcium intake. Some birds do okay, and some just get full, and then don't eat enough calcium. But, continue with free-ranging, because I find that my birds do very well with free-ranging plus a balanced layer feed, clean water, and oyster shell flakes always available to them in a free-choice dish.

    I really think there are certain hens with more shell gland maintenance issues than other hens. I've read the egg spends 20+ hours in the shell gland, getting its calcium layer. That's 20 hours out of the 26 or so it takes to produce an egg. That's a large percentage of time for the shell gland, which is probably why it sometimes misfires, and needs down time for maintenance. And, I mean, think about it, our chickens are bred by humans to lay eggs as young as possible, lay large eggs, and lay continually through the year. Wild birds in nature almost always have a season for laying, then they raise their chicks, then molt, and the oviduct takes a long break until the next year season.

    Anyway, good luck with your hen! After 2 months of bizarre-deposit egg shells, soft shells, and long breaks without laying any eggs, my hen is now producing about 2 eggs every 3 days - with decent shells once again. I'm just giving her time and keeping my fingers crossed.
  8. tans

    tans Hatching

    Apr 27, 2013
    is this look like your egg?[​IMG]
  9. Tonkasmum

    Tonkasmum In the Brooder

    May 31, 2011
    EXACTLY what I have. My Australorpes did that, both of them. Pimples on the outside, those dang things on the inside. Eggs for the puppies, I suppose. Grrr... glad to know I'm not the only one.

    Though they HAVE been tapering off...
  10. plm6846

    plm6846 Chirping

    Sep 17, 2012
    Our chicks Americana, just started laying at 16 weeks. We had one lay a tiny hard shell egg and got two days of soft shell breakers..is this calcium or young chick? Oh yes not the same chicken.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2013

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