Egg eating chicken ate TWO mustard-filled eggs! Help!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Butterprint, Oct 19, 2014.

  1. Butterprint

    Butterprint Chirping

    Oct 10, 2013
    Denver, CO
    We noticed our Rhode Island Red hen (about 32 weeks) was laying eggs and then turning around and eating them. The rest of our flock appears to be leaving their eggs alone, but obviously we're worried the habit will spread.

    So after Googling, I read in several places that you could fill a blown egg with mustard to help break the habit. They said chickens HATE mustard and it will help teach them eggs aren't good. So we filled two blown egg shells full of French's and placed them in the nesting box over night, we kept them in their coop and small run all morning, and went to check later in the day. BOTH mustard filled eggs had been eaten! We were shocked. Everyone said chickens can't stand mustard.

    So now we have two fake eggs in their boxes, and we're going to try and catch the behavior in the act, but any other insight or advice would be greatly appreciated! We're urban keepers with a small flock of 8, so we'd like all the eggs we can get!

    They are on 16% granule layer feed with Oyster shell supplements (and ground shells, when we have them), so I don't THINK it'd be a nutritional thing, but this is new to me. Thanks in advance!
  2. mtngirl35

    mtngirl35 Songster

    Dec 10, 2013
    Are you sure all the hens are eating the oyster shell? I have one hen that hates it. I have to mix it in oatmeal to get her to eat it.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Are you feeding other foods too, that might dilute the 16% protein crumble?
    I'd up the protein, give them some meat scraps.

    I like to feed an 'all flock' 20% protein crumble to all ages and genders. Makes life much simpler to store and distribute one type of chow that everyone can eat and have calcium available at all times for the layers, oyster shell mixed with rinsed, dried, crushed chicken egg shells in a separate container.

    The higher protein crumble offsets the 8% protein scratch grains and other kitchen/garden scraps I like to offer.
  4. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Songster

    Jun 10, 2014
    One thing to remember is that the 16% layer rations are designed to feed to large commercial flocks of white leghorn/leghorn mixes (which most of the production layers are). These are small birds that lay a ton of eggs.

    Sometimes they don't have enough protein for some of the bigger heritage birds.
    CzyChikenMath likes this.

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