Egg laying mishaps

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by cornishhen, Aug 13, 2014.

  1. cornishhen

    cornishhen Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2014
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    Some of my chickens started laying a couple of weeks ago. Things seemed to be going great, but this week isn't going very well and I'm not sure if what we are experiencing is normal or if I'm doing something wrong. My EE laid her first egg Saturday and not one since. That has me concerned. Then Tuesday morning, I found 2 soft shelled eggs on the poop board under the roost. They were right on top of each other, so I am thinking they came from the same bird...what's up with that? Now today, we only got 3 eggs when we have been getting 4-6 every day. One of them was in a nest with no other eggs...the shell was covered in dried yolk. The pine shavings in the nest box were yellow stained with yolk and even the bottom of the box had a big wet looking stain from it. Do I have an egg eater or some more of my girls starting to lay and just trying to get the hang of things? Maybe a yolk got through without a shell? I looked everywhere for little pieces of egg shell, but I didn't see anything that led me to believe someone ate it. But I'm new to all of this and don't really know what to look for. I do feed their egg shells back to them, but only after they are thoroughly rinsed and crushed up and mixed with other treats. Someone told me that would cause them to start eating eggs, so maybe I have made a terrible mistake by doing that. My Grandma always did that, so I figured it was good for them. I work, so I am not home all the time to watch what they are doing. How do I know if I have an egg eater?
     
  2. HardizzlesFlock

    HardizzlesFlock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 31, 2013
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    Don't fret so much. Pullets lay soft shelled and funky eggs all the time. The yolk is probably from an egg that got broke and they just ate the remenents. I crack my chickens eggs and give them all of it. I've never had a problem with them pecking open their eggs.
     
  3. cornishhen

    cornishhen Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2014
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    Oh, good. Thank you so much! I forgot to mention, one of yesterday's eggs had a small dimple/crack in the narrow end of it, so that also had me wondering if someone tried, unsuccessfully, to eat that one. Thanks so much for your reply!
     
  4. cfischer

    cfischer New Egg

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    Aug 13, 2014
    Hi I'm new to raising chickens and am a little confused about a few things. My girls are 18 weeks three red sex links and three white leghorns. I was very surprised to find two perfect small brown eggs in one of the nesting boxes last Thursday and then two more Friday afternoon. Since then not too much except for a few of those weird rubber eggs under there roost and found one this morning on the floor which they all were pecking and eating. My question was once they start laying how long is it until they get on like a regular schedule? They're on layer feed with oyster shell given also. We kind of spoil them and give then treats like fresh veggies and fruit usually late afternoon. They're all squating and seen to be very interested in the nesting boxes. Could they be eating the eggs?
     
  5. Renee572

    Renee572 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2014
    I'm still new at this too but I think it really all depends on each chicken how long it will take their body to get it all figured out. My Australorp started laying on Aug 1st and at first it seemed pretty random when we would get an egg but now I think she is getting the hang of it. She laid an egg the past 4 days... each day probably an hour or 2 later than she had the day before and today it seems she has taken a break. I think according to the pattern she had going she would have laid pretty late in the day so I think she skipped so that she will lay early in the morning tomorrow. At least I hope that's the case because the first week she must have laid one in the middle of the night while roosting and it must have broke when it hit the floor so the chickens had eaten that egg and all I found were shell pieces the next morning. Anyway, chances are your girls are not eating their eggs but just getting into the groove of things. The one they did it was likely broken and that is why it got eaten. I say this because my Australorp has never laid in her nesting box and the chickens have never bothered any of her other eggs that she's laid in random places on the coop floor so the one they ate had to have been broken for them to eat it.

    Good luck and congrats on the first eggs!!
     
  6. cfischer

    cfischer New Egg

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    Aug 13, 2014
    Thank you!! Also one of my leghorns was acting a little strange over the weekend. Out of the three we have she has the biggest and most red combs. A few times over the weekend she seemed almost distressed and I would find her in a corner on the ground or in one if the nesting boxes kind of squating and then sitting. Her eyes kept closing a little and it was like she was straining. When I would go in to give treats she didn't seem to care and just stayed where she was. As far as I know none of the white girls have laid yet because I've only gotten brown eggs. Besides these few incidents she seems totally normal very vocal eating and lots of energy. Any ideas?
     
  7. Renee572

    Renee572 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2014
    Hmmm. I'm not sure about that one. I know my Australorp begins to act strange hours before she lays. I think she is still getting used to it and so she freaks out every time. She does things like pacing back and forth, flying up to the roost, squatting, she gets real vocal and she'll do this off and on for hours and then sure enough I'll find an egg in the general area that she was freaking out in. I'm not sure that's what's happening with yours since you say you haven't found an egg from her yet. Maybe she is egg bound? You can read about that here and see if maybe you can determine whether she is or not. http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/07/chicken-egg-binding-causes-symptoms.html

    Sorry I can't be of more help on this one.
     
  8. cfischer

    cfischer New Egg

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    Aug 13, 2014
    Thanks for the info! She doesn't seem to have the symptoms listed on the site but I'm still watching her. This morning when I let them out she just sat on one of the window ledges and didn't want to come out. My son just went down with corn and she came running out with the other girls. I'm just going to keep my eye on it hopefully there's nothing wrong.
     
  9. Renee572

    Renee572 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2014
    No problem, sorry I couldn't be more helpful. I hope she's alright.
     
  10. cornishhen

    cornishhen Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2014
    Ohio
    We are back in business today. It was our biggest day yet - 8 eggs!! And one was green - yay!! No soft shells, no broken eggs. We obviously have some more that have started laying which may explain all the oddities this week. So relieved they're not eating them!

    cfischer, I hope your girl is ok. Maybe she is just getting close to laying her first egg. Some of mine acted strange and made tons of noise for a couple of weeks before we got any eggs. They started fussing around in the nest boxes and singing the egg song, so I knew we had to be getting close. Once they started laying, they spent hours in the nests and I thought something was wrong, too, but then I was told it's perfectly normal for them to spend time "nesting" before laying an egg.

    Renee572, I put golf balls in my nests to encourage the girls to lay in there. It seems to have worked, other than the few that landed under the roosts during the night. Just a thought to help your Australorp figure out where the eggs are supposed to go. [​IMG]
     

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