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Fresh eggs with runny whites

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Lady Nilstria, Feb 12, 2009.

  1. Lady Nilstria

    Lady Nilstria In the Brooder

    Feb 12, 2009
    Hello. [​IMG]

    I have about a score of laying hens, and for the past month or so, the white of the egg has been watery and runny. When the egg is cracked, it does not hold its shape, and runs all over the pan.

    Any idea why this might be? It's only started relatively recently, and I've had chickens for going on three years now.

    I have five Red Rhode hybrid hens that are in their off laying period, though they should be starting up again. Then five White Rock hens, who are about a year old, and nine Red Rhode hens that are now six months. The Red Rhodes started laying at around 4 1/2 to 5 months of age. They receive, all told, about 3-4 quarts of layers pellets in the evening, and whatever odd bugs in the pasture. They have a constant supply of fresh water, and are very athletic, as they jump over the barn doors and through the slats quite easily.

    They also have five acres to run around in during the day, and a spacious 12x20x10 coop at night. Only a small snake can get in there, and since I have goats, there haven't been any snakes. They're laying schedule is pretty regular, but the runny white of the eggs are annoying me. None of them are sick; they're quite fiesty little things; and any kind of serious pecking happens very rarely. All I can think of is some kind of vitamin or mineral deficiency.

    All of the eggs are fresh, and don't stay out in the barn for more then a day. I bring them up every evening, wash them, and put them in the fridge. Any ones that I miss for a day or two go to the dogs, since we can get some dreadful heat where I am. We've had good weather though, with mild days and nights.

    Any more information...I'm not sure if they're vaccinated. I didn't know much when I first got the Rhode Red hybrids, so next time, I'm switching to a more reputable dealer that vaccinates. [​IMG]

    Thanks for your assistance! ^_^

  2. #1California Chick

    #1California Chick Songster

    Dec 5, 2008
    SF Bay Area
    [​IMG] Welcome to BYC!! [​IMG]

    I am sorry - I don't have an answer for your question.

    Hopefully someone will come along to answer your question.

    Where do you live??

    Good Luck!

  3. Lady Nilstria

    Lady Nilstria In the Brooder

    Feb 12, 2009
    Thank you. ^_^

    I live in what I call the No Rain Zone. [​IMG]
  4. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    Here's just an idea: eggs should be washed in water, at least, 10°F warmer than they are. Some Cooperative Extension sites say 20° warmer and some just say as hot as your hands can bear. . . and, no soaking in water.

    The idea is that a relatively warm egg will allow cold water to penetrate the shell. There needs to be a difference between the cool interior of the egg and the warmer water. With water will come whatever bacteria is on the eggshell. That will result in quick deterioration of the egg.

    What you are describing sounds like "old" eggs. I imagine that's what you are thinking too since you are making a point of the fact that they are not old. Warm outdoor temps and then cold water might be causing problems but that's just a guess . . .


    handling, washing and some really ugly, dirty egg pictures, Univ. of Nebraska
  5. swampwander

    swampwander Songster

    Oct 1, 2008
    Mims, Fl
    My whites are generally runnier than grocery store eggs. Good reason for this. Eggs shells are permeable. They loose moisture in storage. Grocery store eggs have less water in the albumin than fresh eggs because the are old eggs. Also, if your girls are just getting cranked up again, you'll see all kinds of weird things, like soft shells, yolk-less or double yolks and laying while they sleep. Takes my girls about month for all of them to get the eggs right.
  6. DeeTee

    DeeTee In the Brooder

    Oct 1, 2008
    Desbarats, Ontario
    What is your local climate? Is it possible that some of your eggs have been frozen inthe coop? I have experienced runny whites due to the eggs being frozen.
    The rest of the time the whites are thick and stay around the yolk when I crack the eggs...
  7. HennysMom

    HennysMom Keeper of the Tiara

    Hmm - I thought all freshly laid eggs had more watery egg whites than not? Mine have always been this way compared to a store bought egg [​IMG] They're just not aged - if I age them - Say - 2 weeks - they're not as watery as a freshly laid egg.

    Thats always been my understanding....


  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Fresh eggs should have a very thick white, not runny. Some causes in fresh eggs are possibly genetic or molting or very hot weather OR Infectious Bronchitis. That more than anything causes runny whites and a decrease in quality, as I understand it. It can run through a flock without alot of symptoms, especially if they are very healthy to start with.
  9. Lady Nilstria

    Lady Nilstria In the Brooder

    Feb 12, 2009
    I do wash my eggs with hot water, though I use a tiny bit of dawn dish soap to get stuff off. Could that be a problem?

    Oh, we're up to 75 during the day now Dee. ^_^ We rarely get below 35 at night, but I don't let my eggs stay at the barn overnight if I can help it.

    No, none of my ladies are molting. In fact, I've never had a molting chicken in the three years I've had chickens.

    What are the chicken symptoms of infectious bronchitis, just because I'm curious?
  10. Don P

    Don P In the Brooder

    Aug 14, 2012
    Signs of possible bronchitis are: Labored breathing or wheezing. Sitting with mouth open for a long time. Lethargy, and not eating.
    There are good herbs and nutrients that will clear this in a couple days of feeding it to them 3 x day with an eye dropper.

    I have had 2 hens over the years who had this bronchitis, one may have just been sick and not eating or moving. In in both cases they rejected the liquid in the dropper initially and I had to hold the beak with one hand and just soak it with the thick solution then as they open and get some in I squirt a lot more in.
    Eventually they like my solution and will even peck drops of it off my hand that spill. Then I know they are getting well.

    One had obvious labored breathing and would hold her mouth open gasping for air and wheezing loudly so it was easy to get the nutrients and herbs in.The other was not moving at all and not eating. So I had to work to get it in her beak the 1st day. I isolated her for 5 days until she was breathing normally and her strength returned and she was eating on her own. The other one I never separated because by the end of the 1st day she was already better.

    I add a little mash, fermented is best, with plant source vitamins, minerals and probiotics to it so they get food and nourishment as well as garlic, cayenne, ginger and some other herbs and or or essential oils depending on symptoms. You can use herb powders or liquid extracts. I mix it up with a little water so it is a little thick like gravy, sit the hen on my lap and start squirting.

    Its good to add the cayenne, ginger and garlic granules (not powder which has white flour to cut it), to all the hen's feed for a while to be sure it has not spread. I add those herbs quarterly or more to their food for a couple week or 2 just to keep them healthy. And if you have mice or rats the cayenne added into the feed helps keep them out of it, many people say.

    Don't use food spice, which is often older and less potent. If possible get herbs because they are usually stronger and fresher sources of the plants if yo get good brands at your health store herb shop or natural physician.

    I never used to have any problems with hens but in recent years, the poorer feed quality and health of birds is so much worse. Got to get them on good organic non-GMO feed if you are going to eat their eggs. And if you don't use weed and feed on your lawn then give them the trimmings when you mow if they don't free pasture.

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