Eggs and cold weather

mhegge

Songster
Sep 2, 2015
123
37
111
In a few weeks I will be headed back to work and had a question on eggs and freezing. I'm in Wisconsin and our temps haven't been bad lately, I know we'll get colder. So I'll likely leave for the day before the eggs are laid, all of us gone by 7am and not home till 4pm. I'll basically have time to take them feed and fresh water and open their gate so they can free range. We don't heat our coop so overnight it'll dip below freezing but will warm up quite a bit when the sun comes out. So will the eggs be ok? What happens if they freeze and how can you tell if they freeze? So far my 5 hens are still laying great, just a slight dip since the snow flew, but still getting 3-4 eggs a day and sometimes 5, no light or heat. The coop and run have been staying about 10° warmer overnight than outside temp and upwards of 20° in the day if it's sunny. The first time water froze in the day in the run was when it was 15° outside.
 

Happy Chooks

Free Ranging
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Jul 9, 2009
40,417
3,557
626
Northern CA
My Coop
My Coop
Collect the eggs in the evening when you get home, then you don't have to worry about them freezing.

If you have a waterer in your coop, that can give you an idea. Does it freeze inside the coop? Depending on the size of your coop and how many chickens you have, it may not get cold enough to freeze. Chickens put off a lot of heat.
 

mhegge

Songster
Sep 2, 2015
123
37
111
The waterer is in the connected run which is covered in winter to keep warmth in. It will get down to freezing in there though once the highs are only in teens and lower. I was planning on collecting eggs each night, I just wasn't sure when the temps dip below 0, how long they'd last before freezing. I was sure the shell and straw help some too besides just the "chicken heat". I usually keep my eggs on the counter, is it OK to put them right from that cold then to counter warmth?
 

MelissaEm

In the Brooder
May 8, 2015
14
2
26
400

This is what I went out to this morning. Our first frozen egg :-( I'm thinking it was laid late last night or very early this morning. It wasn't there when I closed them in last night.
 

MikeTheGardener

Chirping
5 Years
Sep 3, 2014
158
14
73
New Jersey
I have found here in NJ that when temps are below freezing, the eggs will freeze and crack. We try to get them as soon as possible. We also use a heated water bowl so the water doesn't freeze.
 

mhegge

Songster
Sep 2, 2015
123
37
111
Thanks everyone. If they freeze and crack, do you ever cook them up for the chickens or the dog? Hate to waste them.
 

Chickenkeepr

Chirping
May 5, 2015
206
12
86
Watertown, NY
Here in Norther NY it gets COLD. I find that some days the eggs will freeze, others they won't. Sometimes the ones that are laid early do, sometimes they don't. Our coop is 8x8, heavily bedded and insulated. I will NOT put a heater in there. Their water is outside in the first part of the run with a tank heater in it so no worries there. If I get a frozen egg I've got 2 dogs and a pot belly pig that LOVE them so they never go to waste. I see no reason why you couldn't cook them up and feed them back to your girls as well.
 

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