Help!!!! My chickens ate one of their eggs!!!!!

kezabel

Songster
10 Years
May 1, 2009
811
16
141
Charmhaven - Australia
Ok I had to go out all day yesterday, so this morning when I checked the coop I found one egg but it was on the ground and had been pecked open and eaten... Is this because the egg was left in the coop to long as I didn't collect the eggs yesterday because I didn't get a chance? They are let out of their coop everyday and they were yesterday too by my mother inlaw who came around to watch my son for me I had to go to a Funeral.
Should I be worried this might happen again? Is there any thing I can do to stop it happening? I also noticed the nesting boxes were a mess, all the straw was everywhere, there is usually a nice little mound with a hollow in it where they lay their egg but now it looks like a total mess.
 

Imp

All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle
11 Years
Sep 7, 2008
14,453
169
318
The Emerald City
My Coop
Sounds like you have an egg eating chicken. They can be broken from this usually.
Collect frequently, especially in the morning if they lay mostly in the morning
Rearrange the coop to shake things up
Add nest boxes
Darken the nest boxes (add a curtain in front)
Put fake eggs, golf/pingpong balls in the nests
Some have reported success with filling hollowed out eggs with mustard/ horseradish

Good luck, I stopped mine last December.

Imp

Messed up coop- Could it be a predator?
 

kezabel

Songster
10 Years
May 1, 2009
811
16
141
Charmhaven - Australia
Thanks for the advice Imp. I'll make sure I collect the eggs first thing in the morning. I've cleaned the coop and changed all the straw in the nesting boxes, I have two boxes for 4 hens, Is that enough boxes? My coop isn't big enough to move everything around, The nesting boxes sit on a low shelf and I can't put them any where else, They roost above the nesting boxes on a perch.

I have included 2 pics of our coop, There have been some new things added since these pics were taken, A perch above the nesting boxes, A fashour in front of the roosting area to keep them cosy and also more corigatted iron on the sides to give them more protection from the rain.



These pics were taken before we had any chickens.



I doubt it was a preditor that messed up the nesting boxes because we don't have many preditors around here. I live in a very built up suburb. Our cat keeps guard too, we call her the hen protector lol.
I don't know what time my mother inlaw let them out of the coop yesterday, could it of been bordem if they were left in there to long?
 

Imp

All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle
11 Years
Sep 7, 2008
14,453
169
318
The Emerald City
My Coop
Yes it could be boredom.
And 2 boxes is enough for 4 hens.
I was fortunate that when mine started laying and egg eating, I was just starting a vacation. So I was home for 10 days to focus. I think what helped most was adding 5 gal buckets as their nests, and the fake eggs.
Also, mine have never made a true nest always a mess lol

Imp/Russ
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
11 Years
Feb 2, 2009
25,682
15,688
777
Southeast Louisiana
A lot of different things could have happened. I would not panic if it is a one-off event but definitely check it out and take steps to stop egg-eaters. It could have been an accident that the egg was out there and broken, but that is often the way egg-eating starts. I would not discount the possibility of a rat since the nest was torn up and the egg was in the open but the shell was not eaten.

Good luck!
 

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