May 29, 2019
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Hello,

Last night we took a few of our girls to a pen in the basement to give them a reprieve from the heat. Early the next morning, we found that one of them, our EE "Darla," had laid her first egg. It was small but strong and normal-looking (we know it was hers because the other two lay brown eggs, and this was white.)

Fast-forward to the late morning/early afternoon and Darla is acting really strange, going in and out of the coop, panting, can't seem to settle down, keeps roosting periodically but never staying put. Not very interested in food or water unless you hand feed her a treat or make it really obvious to her.

So, we took her back to the basement pen to see if she needed a cool, darker place to lay another egg. She's still acting strange, clearly trying to nest but never settling down. Did the egg laying song for a while and now just does a low, constant clucking. Is it possible she's egg bound? She laid one early this morning (or late last night)--could it happen that suddenly? Or maybe she was already backed up w/ a second egg when the first came out? Or, is this just her being freaked out about the "changes" and working up another egg?

We're worried but don't want to rush into anything. Her comb is bright red and she has plenty of energy, just seems a little "off her rocker."
 

ashlierami

Songster
Feb 9, 2017
871
1,553
232
Alabama
Hello,

Last night we took a few of our girls to a pen in the basement to give them a reprieve from the heat. Early the next morning, we found that one of them, our EE "Darla," had laid her first egg. It was small but strong and normal-looking (we know it was hers because the other two lay brown eggs, and this was white.)

Fast-forward to the late morning/early afternoon and Darla is acting really strange, going in and out of the coop, panting, can't seem to settle down, keeps roosting periodically but never staying put. Not very interested in food or water unless you hand feed her a treat or make it really obvious to her.

So, we took her back to the basement pen to see if she needed a cool, darker place to lay another egg. She's still acting strange, clearly trying to nest but never settling down. Did the egg laying song for a while and now just does a low, constant clucking. Is it possible she's egg bound? She laid one early this morning (or late last night)--could it happen that suddenly? Or maybe she was already backed up w/ a second egg when the first came out? Or, is this just her being freaked out about the "changes" and working up another egg?

We're worried but don't want to rush into anything. Her comb is bright red and she has plenty of energy, just seems a little "off her rocker."
I actually have noticed my new layers do this the first few times they lay. I always assumed they were getting used to the egg pain and knowing when to go lay. Egg bound hen usuallly doesn't feel well and will waddle and be puffed up and you can feel the egg in her
 
May 29, 2019
631
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I actually have noticed my new layers do this the first few times they lay. I always assumed they were getting used to the egg pain and knowing when to go lay. Egg bound hen usuallly doesn't feel well and will waddle and be puffed up and you can feel the egg in her
That is heartening to hear, thank you for your two cents. I'm hoping that's what's going on. The others who started laying a couple weeks back were agitated/excitable around that time, but not to this degree. Fingers crossed I wake up to another egg from her tomorrow... I will be immensely relieved!
 

ashlierami

Songster
Feb 9, 2017
871
1,553
232
Alabama
That is heartening to hear, thank you for your two cents. I'm hoping that's what's going on. The others who started laying a couple weeks back were agitated/excitable around that time, but not to this degree. Fingers crossed I wake up to another egg from her tomorrow... I will be immensely relieved!
If she's the same tomorrow check near her vent for an egg or lube up your finger and check inside. Provide her with calcium in her feed or by oyster shells at all times. Hope this helps!
 

LaidWithLove

Songster
Nov 26, 2017
50
113
101
New layers are kind of like new moms of the animal world: they're fussier than usual and seem restless. They know something has shifted and can't quit adjust to just what exactly they're supposed to be doing. My new layers occasionally get upset like this, flying all over and stirring everyone up. Usually I let them out to roam the yard so the one hen can have the coop to herself. They seem to like the solitude. Sometimes, me sitting in the coop with them helps, kind of like a reassurance that this is where they should go. I have one now, a Speckled Sussex that just wails because she's so agitated. I go out there and she flies into the nestbox and settles immediately. They just want someone to comfort them lol.
 
May 29, 2019
631
1,047
221
New layers are kind of like new moms of the animal world: they're fussier than usual and seem restless. They know something has shifted and can't quit adjust to just what exactly they're supposed to be doing. My new layers occasionally get upset like this, flying all over and stirring everyone up. Usually I let them out to roam the yard so the one hen can have the coop to herself. They seem to like the solitude. Sometimes, me sitting in the coop with them helps, kind of like a reassurance that this is where they should go. I have one now, a Speckled Sussex that just wails because she's so agitated. I go out there and she flies into the nestbox and settles immediately. They just want someone to comfort them lol.
You are a good chicken mom! We go down to visit with Darla in her "private suite" frequently and she does seem to settle. I don't know if she actually has to lay this second or just feels she's in the process and agitated (as mentioned earlier, she laid this early this morning already). I will have to try what @ashlierami suggested tomorrow and check for egg binding if she's still seems "off"... though I'm hoping she'll have laid her 2nd egg by then. She's a sweetheart and I want her get through this soon!
 

Ebony Rose

Crowing
12 Years
May 26, 2009
2,500
5,642
471
David, Chiriquí, Panama
Don't be overly concerned if she lays some odd looking eggs and doesn't seem to lay on any particular schedule for the first few weeks or so. That said, if she starts looking poorly, like she's really trying to lay but can't, starts refusing food and water, and/or walks like a penguin... then mash up a hard boiled egg (or scrambled egg), add a drizzle of unsweetened yogurt if you have it (or milk if you don't have yogurt), a drop or two of 'chick booster' (or whatever liquid chicken multivitamin); you're looking to get a wasabe paste type of texture so that it's easy for you to hand feed this to her. The egg yolk will offer her a complete protein with a high calcium content to strengthen her contractions (especially helpful if she's laying a shell-less egg), give her a 15-20 minute bath (temperature is right when it's warm on the inside of your wrist, but not uncomfortable). After her bath, lube up her vent, both inside and out while wearing rubber/nitrile/latex gloves, also gently sliding one lubed finger into her vent about 1 to 2 inches, examining for an obstruction (egg). An new layer has a higher likelihood of laying an egg without the shell, and these 'rubber' eggs are very difficult to pass. It's like trying to stick your wet hand into a rubber glove... it can be done, but not without quite a bit of straining and possibly a few choice words. Congratulations on your started pullet!
 
May 29, 2019
631
1,047
221
Don't be overly concerned if she lays some odd looking eggs and doesn't seem to lay on any particular schedule for the first few weeks or so. That said, if she starts looking poorly, like she's really trying to lay but can't, starts refusing food and water, and/or walks like a penguin... then mash up a hard boiled egg (or scrambled egg), add a drizzle of unsweetened yogurt if you have it (or milk if you don't have yogurt), a drop or two of 'chick booster' (or whatever liquid chicken multivitamin); you're looking to get a wasabe paste type of texture so that it's easy for you to hand feed this to her. The egg yolk will offer her a complete protein with a high calcium content to strengthen her contractions (especially helpful if she's laying a shell-less egg), give her a 15-20 minute bath (temperature is right when it's warm on the inside of your wrist, but not uncomfortable). After her bath, lube up her vent, both inside and out while wearing rubber/nitrile/latex gloves, also gently sliding one lubed finger into her vent about 1 to 2 inches, examining for an obstruction (egg). An new layer has a higher likelihood of laying an egg without the shell, and these 'rubber' eggs are very difficult to pass. It's like trying to stick your wet hand into a rubber glove... it can be done, but not without quite a bit of straining and possibly a few choice words. Congratulations on your started pullet!

Thank you! I will try that tomorrow, if she still seems out of sorts. I'll give her some time to work up the second egg, though. Very helpful tips!

Now that we're talking about weird eggs... one of my other new layer's, and ISA Brown, started laying gorgeous, supermodel eggs about a week or two ago. Her first was soft-shelled, but they've been great after that. Well, today, she laid another beauty in the morning. And this evening, as I was bringing them some food, she squatted and laid another egg--this one soft-shelled--right in front of me. Do you know what would cause this? It's been less than 12 hours since she laid her last egg.
 

Ebony Rose

Crowing
12 Years
May 26, 2009
2,500
5,642
471
David, Chiriquí, Panama
Their first fee weeks to a month of laying will be 'all over the place' as far as eggs go. Perfect eggs, tiny eggs, rubber eggs, wrinkled eggs, skipping a day or two of eggs, laid it while she was sleeping (and found it under the roost) eggs, etc. They're working the kinks out of their reproductive system. You're not allowed to worry about them for the first month of laying... got it?? :duc Only time you can worry about it is if they start looking totally sick or as described in my previous post.
 
May 29, 2019
631
1,047
221
Their first fee weeks to a month of laying will be 'all over the place' as far as eggs go. Perfect eggs, tiny eggs, rubber eggs, wrinkled eggs, skipping a day or two of eggs, laid it while she was sleeping (and found it under the roost) eggs, etc. They're working the kinks out of their reproductive system. You're not allowed to worry about them for the first month of laying... got it?? :duc Only time you can worry about it is if they start looking totally sick or as described in my previous post.
I will be reading your post ^ every day until the month is over to keep myself sane lol (thank you calming my mind!).
 

MANNA-PRO

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