Eggs are being Pecked & Eaten?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by rockinP, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. rockinP

    rockinP New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 3, 2009
    My chickens have been laying eggs all summer & although I'm kinda new to chicken raising I'm puzzled. I had 2 ducks in the coop with them until I noticed my eggs were being eaten shell & all. I found one of my ducks with "egg on his face" literally. LOL So, I decided they didn't need to be in the coop with the chickens any longer & released them to a wonderful life at our local park with a huge duck pond. Thinking I had "FIXED" the egg eating problem we went to collect our lovely eggs today & found eggs broken up in the nestbox. Now my question to you is....is this normal behavior or did the ducks teach them this habit & how do I stop it???
     
  2. rockinP

    rockinP New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 3, 2009
    bump
     
  3. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    First off Welcome to BYC.

    Egg eating is a tough problem. There are a few things you can do to try and stop it.

    Fake(wood, ceramic, golf balls etc) in the nests. The idea is that they will peck at the fake eggs and get no satisfaction.
    Blow out eggs and refill with something like hot horseradish, hot mustard, or liquid soap. Same idea, they won't like the results.
    Keep the nest dim/dark. The idea is if they cannot see the eggs they won't eat them.
    Some people have even put up curtains to darken the nests.
    Collect often so they don't get the chance to eat them.
    There are roll away nest that are slanted so the eggs roll out of the reach of the hens.
    I had success with rearranging the inside of the coop, to shake things up, and using the fake eggs.

    Good luck

    Imp
     
  4. rockinP

    rockinP New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 3, 2009
    Thanks for the info, I'll try these tricks. I had already thought about the rollaway option, I'd like to have them roll out so I can gather them outside the coop anyway so I might have to get my husband busy on a design for that. I know when I used the "peck no more" when they pecked on each other they didn't like that. They would do it & rub their beaks in the dirt to get it off. I dont blame them because just the smell of that stuff is enough for me. LOL I'll repost if these tricks help.
     
  5. rockinP

    rockinP New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 3, 2009
    Another question on this matter. Could it be that they are bored? They have a pretty large run to go into & their coop is larger than most I've seen. Is there something I can put in the run that will entertain them more? Will that help?
     
  6. bburn

    bburn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 9, 2010
    Delaware, Arkansas
    I am new too but can't stay off this site. I had only one that I knew for sure was being eaten....caught in the act running with the shell and everyone chasing. I think it was either an egg laid on the floor or the hen that gets in the nest backwards. Regardless they found it and ate it. I was right there and cleaned the coop and put in new bedding. They searched high and low in the corner....all of them...for another egg which is why I think one got laid on the floor.

    And....I know when they lay. I go out and throw BOSS and regular feed in the run for the ones that are not laying to keep them busy while the egg laying business is going on. It has helped.....there has not been another egg that I know of that was eaten.

    But I always go out at the time of day they are laying and throw BOSS or feed in the run....they look forward to it and spend a lot of time hunting for it......I don't put it in a pile but broadcast it in the pen. And I go out on a regular basis and check for eggs.
     
  7. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    Quote:Yeah, I suppose that could contribute. And entertainment is always good.

    You can buy or bake a flock block for them. Another idea often posted is to hang a cabbage just above their head height, so they need to jump for it. A suet feeder stuffed with greens/treats etc is another idea.

    Imp- I see a trend. It'a all about the food. [​IMG]
     
  8. rockinP

    rockinP New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 3, 2009
    Please dont laugh at me too hard but what is BOSS? hahahaha Earlier in the summer I fed them veggie scraps out of the garden but now there aren't any. I guess I need to buy some goodies for them to eat. Here in Texas we have been overrun by yellow grasshoppers so my husband & I would go catch a bunch of them & put them in the run with them. Lordy, how chickens LOVE grasshoppers. Now the grasshoppers are thinning out due to cooler weather & now is when they start going for the eggs. I think there is something to do with it there so I guess I need to put more treats in there. I like the idea of the cabbage. I'll try that & I also have a suet feeder so I'll take that out there & put some greens in it. Thanks for the ideas....hope it works because now that the eggs are getting big they start eating them. LOL
     
  9. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    BOSS is Black oil Sunflower Seeds

    Imp
     
  10. rockinP

    rockinP New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Aug 3, 2009
    LOL I thought it would be something simple like that....duhhhh. I do feed those mixed in their feed. [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by