1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

Eggs and questions!! First timer!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by gypsywitch, Jun 6, 2011.

  1. gypsywitch

    gypsywitch Hatching

    Jun 6, 2011
    Good Morning! So after about 2 months of trying to ready my coop, a 'play area" and backyard, I finally got my hens and rooster. I have 8 sexlink hens, about 11 months old, and 1 Americana. They started producing eggs the first day! So I got the eggs and washed them.. Do I put them in the refrigerator immediately or how long can they stand to be unrefrigerated? I work during the day, so I am worried about how long they can be in open air!

    Also, two of the eggs had extremely thin shells. They broke when we picked them up. The rest all seemed fine. I could use a little help here! Thanks so much!

  2. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    Hi Gypsywitch!

    As long as you collect your eggs daily, things will be just fine. I collect mine, wipe off any poo, and put them right into the fridge in the same day.

    You will have some thin shelled eggs here and there, but if you're feeding a good layer feed, your hens should be getting enough calcium. You can always supply some crushed oyster shell in a container in the coop that they can eat as they wish. That will give them a little calcium boost, and give them harder shells.
  3. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle


    Unwashed eggs are OK for a few weeks on the counter, a few months in the fridge. Less if they are washed. If your kitchen is very hot in the summer, it would not be good to store them on the counter.

    For the thin shells- make sure they are on a layer feed and have access to oyster shells for supplemental calcium.

  4. AnaD

    AnaD Songster

    Jan 27, 2011
    N. Ca
    I don't wash the eggs due to the coating that keeps bad microorganisms away. If you want to wash do so before you eat them or they will not last as long. They will last out in a dry area for up to two or three weeks....ours never last that long do to our egg consumption. lol
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    When the hen lays an egg, she puts a coating in it called bloom. That coating helps keep bacteria out as long as it is intact. If you wash the egg, sandpaper it, or do something else to clean it, they bloom is removed and it should be refrigerated. But a clean unwashed egg will last for a very long time on your kitchen counter, and even longer in a refrigerator. If you collect them once a day, you are doing fine.

    As a side note, the bloom helps keep the bacteria out but it is not a perfect barrier. Don't store them foolishly and don't get the idea that the bloom is a cure-all.

    There are several different things that could cause the thin egg shells. I'm guessing that you got them all at the same place so they have all been eating the same thing. So it is probably not that they are not eating enough calcium. It still would not hurt to get some oyster shell and offer that on the side, but if the other eggs are OK, that is probably not the real problem. Most flocks get enough calcium from the Layer feed they eat. I still offer oyster shell on the side.

    My guess is that the move has caused them some stress and temporarily messed up their internal egg laying factory. Once they get settled in, the problem should take care of itself. If it does not clear up within a week, I'd suspect a different problem.

    Good luck and welcome to the adventure.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by