First egg without a shell?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Kathleen1115, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. Kathleen1115

    Kathleen1115 Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 21, 2011
    My girls are just starting to lay so I've been watching them carefully. Two have started ( one EE, one GLW), eggs are perfect, girls are using the nesting boxes perfectly, no mishaps. My two BOs have seemed just on the verge of laying and have been in and out of the boxes, are squatting, etc. Tonight when I went out to close up the coop, one of them was sitting in the box and the other was on the perch just outside watching her very intently. I opened the hatch on the outside of the nesting boxes to take the egg if there was one and she was in the process of laying. When it came out it was milky and translucent and had a lot of what looked like mucus around it. I thought maybe it had to harden so I left it and when I came back, it was gone with some white and yolk left in the box, no shell to be found. I cleaned out the box but am assuming either she or her sister ate the egg. I've never seen an egg being laid before and I know the shells are soft as they come out, but this one was pretty translucent. I'm also very disturbed that someone ate the egg, but if it was a "defective" first egg, could she have just been cleaning up after herself?

    NYREDS Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 14, 2008
    Not all that uncommon for a first egg to be laid w/o a shell. Doesn't happen with all birds but it does happen. It can even happen once in awhile to older birds. Because there is no shell the egg breaks easily & when an egg break, shell or not, all the birds in the pen will rush to eat it.
  3. myfivegirls

    myfivegirls Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 12, 2009
    Delhi, NY
    "NYREDS" is right. Soft-shelled or no-shell eggs are sometimes laid when a pullet starts laying. And they will eat the egg if the shell is broken or easily broken.
    No worries - it will usually improve as their egg-laying system straightens out. Also, make sure you have oyster shell or some source of calcium. It helps in the formation of strong egg shells.
  4. duckking

    duckking Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 2, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    I had the same thing happen with my Delaware. Two days ago I went out because I heard the egg song happening and she was smeared with yolk all over her chest and underbelly. No shells, no evidence of anything. She hasn't laid again yet. All 4 of my hens are exhibiting egg-laying behaviours, squatting, nesting, etc. Hoping the next one will be a goody!
  5. Kathleen1115

    Kathleen1115 Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 21, 2011
    Thanks! We added oyster shells today, just in case. The EE and the GLW are laying every day, just fine, and the other BO laid her first egg today and it was just perfect. We'll just keep an eye out. Glad to know its pretty common.

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