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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by ahasbeen, Feb 29, 2012.

  1. ahasbeen

    ahasbeen New Egg

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    Apr 24, 2011
    Hi all. If you don't know, ask. I've got 3 RIR's about 6-7 months old & have been consistantly laying 2 eggs a day, sometimes 3. The screened in henhouse is 4 ft x 8 ft with a second floor roost 2 1/2 x 4 ft with a seperate side nesting box. A mash feeder and fresh water is inside 24/7. Every morning I let them out and they run free in the back yard, never stop pecking like I was starving them. Doing what chickens do I guess. During the day I'll throw out maybe one pound of corn scratch. Couple days ago one dropped an egg from the roosting bar which was full size but with an undeveloped shell. Is this telling me something? Today--no eggs. Now I'm wondering should I change or add something to their diet? If so, what ? Most of the day they're in the yard pecking at grass, in the flower bed, scratching under a couple citrus trees, etc., and eating mash ONLY when I put them back in the pen. So now I wondering if this might be of a concern- too much grass/dirt and not enough mash? I've read where some people give them all kinds of table scraps- that they will eat anything. I'm not too keen on that idea as they seem "picky" and there's enough house-flies in the yard now. Another thing, my mama told me that a dark yellow egg yolk indicated an older egg. (since she always bought "day-old " eggs). For the past 75 years I've always believed her until my 3 girls started laying. Every one so far has been a darker yellow than any store-bought eggs that could be who knows how old. I will say, the yolks seem to be getting lighter in color and not a thick. One other thing-- I wonder what kind of feed do the commercial egg producers feed their hens. No table scraps here !

    I apologize for the long post, but I want y'all to know my situation. Thanks! Anybody care to comment direct---email [email protected]
     
  2. Glasshen

    Glasshen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 13, 2012
    La Fayette, NY
    Hi, and welcome!
    It sounds like your girls have been very reliable, and they are very young. I have some RIR also, and Only for less than a year. But, I hate to disagree with anyone's Mom, but darker yolks are from healthier chickens who get great nutrition. You should see them when they eat tomatoes! Grocery store eggs have pale yolks and those poor chickens live only in cages.

    The shell less egg, you may need to give them a dish of crushed oyster shell, and even if it isn't all gone add more every day or so. They only like certain size pieces, and need the calcium for shell formation.

    The chicken food gives them what they need, so, what I have been trying to do is have them out doors a while, but in for a good part of the day. Here in Central NY there isn't much for them to eat yet. On a warm day I did see one get a worm, but that was unusual for February. But I love to let them have their fresh air and exercise for part of the day.

    Good luck, and I hope someone more experienced and knowledgeable will chime in. Enjoy your chickens.
     

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