Found Nest


11 Years
Sep 13, 2011
Senoia, Ga
I have been getting eggs from my RIR's since thanksgiving. I have had 1 hen disappear during the day. Well yesterday, I found a nest with 29 eggs in it. I guess she's been laying almost everyday since the first of Dec. My question is, What should I do with these eggs? I wouldn't think any of them were viable since she only sits on the nest during the day, roosting with the others at night.
I would get a glass of water and put each egg in the glass. If the egg floats its bad if it doesn't it's should be fine to eat. Eggs usually keep for a while. Keep us posted as to what goes on with it.
They should be safe to eat since the hen was obviously not broody.

I would do the water float test just for my own piece of mind and do crack the egg into a separate container when ready to eat.

And, of course, if you do not want to eat them, scramble 'em up and feed them to the chickens!

The float test does not tell you which egg is good and which is bad. It tells you which egg is fresher. As an egg ages, it loses moisture and the air cell gets bigger. A fresh egg sinks to the bottom. One a little older will stand on end in the bottom of the pan. One still older will float. The float test tells you which ones to be more suspicious of, not which one is good or bad.

Eggs "go bad" by bacteria getting inside and multiplying. If bacteria does not get inside, they don't go bad. A hen can lay eggs for over two weeks, then set on them for three weeks to hatch them. If bacteria gets inside and multiply, they don't hatch. Turkeys can take even longer.

Just because they are older does not necessarily mean they are bad, but they are more suspicious. In a situation like that, I'd feed all of them back to the chcikens, not necessarily because they are bad and, since the hen is not broody, not because I would be worried about them developing. I just don't need them and don't need the hassle. I would not sell them or give them to others, since I did not have control over them for that length of time.

If you want, you can do the float test for your peace of mind. It does tell you age and which are more suspicious. You can use any of them, but I would sniff them before I cracked them. The egg shell is porous. If they are going bad, you have a pretty good chance to tell that by smelling them. And I would crack them in a separate bowl before I mixed them with anything I did not want to throw away.
Gathered them up today. Had 31 in all. No way to tell what order she layed them. I cleaned up the spot & moved the wheelbarrow. Maybe now she will lay in the box with her sisters. Thanks.
I found a nest like that over the weekend.

I had a chicken that would get out every day this past summer/fall (to this day I still don't know exactly how she did it). I searched all the expected nesting spots outside the run just in case - no luck. Then I thought she would come just back to lay eggs in the box and then leave again (I had two EEs, and I would find either one or two every day). She unfortunately is no longer with us, so I had stopped thinking about where she could have been going to lay the eggs

Then on Saturday, I had to go hunt down one of my dachshunds that wasn't coming back in the house. I'm wandering the yard calling for him. He came skulking out from under one of the cedars next to the run with a blue egg shell on his face. The nest has been found.

After I got him back in the house, I found another dozen eggs buried under the leaves/mulch/straw etc that were covering the nest - no telling how many the dog ate.

Since I knew they were out there for a couple of months, I didn't even bother checking to see if they were good or not. There have been enough freeze/thaw cycles here, that there was no reason to chance anything. I didn't even bother to give them back to the chickens.

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