egg yolk color

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by beach livin', Jan 17, 2012.

  1. beach livin'

    beach livin' Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 21, 2011
    my yolks do not seem to be as dark and bright as they were when they first satrted laying. granted, they are not milky yellow like from the store. but they are still not the "orange" that i feel they should be. any specific nutrient you think they are missing? they get a layer crumble, occasional kitchen scraps, BOSS, and once a day they get cracked corn(maybe 1/2 C. total for all 4 hens), and they get out in the yard on the weekends when i am home and can watch them. thank you for your advise.
  2. TaylorHobbyFarms

    TaylorHobbyFarms Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2010
    As it is winter time, it could be what's missing in the yard on their outings. Also, are you still eating fresh eggs or do you have a surplus in the fridge where the ones you are eating may be a 2 weeks or older? Just some thoughts.
  3. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    This time of year there aren't as many greens available to them as in the summer, so the yolks do tend to get a little paler.
  4. jomoncon

    jomoncon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 24, 2010
    New Orleans, LA
    In the winter, I try to get get my girls some greens at least once a week, This means buying a head of cabbage, or bunch of mustard/collard greens. The big, chain grocery stores won't give away their unused produce, so I have to buy whatever is on sale that week. And I haven't been able to find a smaller store to give them to me. I also keep an eye out for any sales on frozen veggies. I try to avoid canned ones, because of the increased sodium.

    The extra veggies help keep the yolks a beautiful color.
  5. lcammack

    lcammack Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 15, 2011
    I go to Costco and buy a huge bag of baby spinach. Much more cost effective then buying from the grocery store, if you are a Costco member. The chickens love it and it helps keep there yolks orange. We also use alfalfa cubes, just soak them in water to reconstitute. They don't like them as much, but will eat it if that is all there is. Alfalfa cubes are very inexpensive and for our 6 chickens 2 cubes are more then enough for a couple days.
  6. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Go buy a bag of alfalfa pellets. They are designed for horses,and they are cheap, but chickens cannot eat such a hard, large pellet. Soak a handful overnight, in a 3 to 1 hot water ratio. By morning, just those few pellets will have exploded!! They'll have absorbed all that water. Mix this in a bucket with layer feed. Mix it good. They don't care for it "straight". Within a week of having alfalfa providing 25% of their diet, those yolks will look like summer time yolks again.

    Alfalfa is 16% protein, same as layer, so there's no sacrifice of protein. I figure they explode about 5 times bigger than when they start, so they're very economical to feed.
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2012
  7. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 31, 2008
    Thanks for the alfalfa mixing tip! We bought a bag last week and soaked them but the hens wouldn't touch them straight. I'll have DH mix it with the scratch feed mix that he gives them.
    He already mixes in the cayenne pepper. It really did kickstart the eggs for us!
  8. jomoncon

    jomoncon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 24, 2010
    New Orleans, LA
    Thanks for this idea. We don't have a Costco locally, but we do have a Sam's, so I'll take a look there the next time!

    I'll have to give this a try. I tried alfalfa pellets once before & the girls would not touch it. I'll try mixing it with feed, or scratch or oatmeal.
  9. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Just remember to pre-soak those alfalfa pellets over night. They will disintegrate and become moist flakes. Easy on the mixing ratio, so as to "hide" them a bit.
  10. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Chicken Obsessed

    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    In the fall I buy some leftover Halloween pumpkins and any squash I can find on discount, then store them in my garage (above freezing). Every week they get a pumpkin or squash treat. The brightly colored vegetables and greens mentioned above will help keep your yolk color up.

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