hens eating their own eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by medan, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. medan

    medan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 1, 2010
    I have a couple of hens that eat their own eggs they mostly leave me the empty shell what do you think I should do ?
  2. annie3001

    annie3001 My Girls

    Jun 11, 2009
    can you grab the eggs before they eat them? or i suppose you would have done that already. do you know which hen (chicken) is doing this? i would seperate the chicken from the nesting boxes.
    i pulled this from google search.

    Different circumstances may cause chickens to eat eggs, and once they start, it’s a difficult habit to break. Here are a few suggestions to prevent egg eating.

    Raise nest boxes at least 18 inches off the floor. Bored chickens, especially roosters, are less likely to start pecking at eggs if they’re not at ground level.
    Feed a balanced ration.
    Make oyster shells available to layer hens. This prevents a calcium shortage, which can sometimes prompt hens to start eating eggs.
    Make sure the chickens have adequate space — preferably allow them to range on pasture during the day.
    Gather eggs frequently so the chickens don’t have access to them for long.
    Try nests that allow the eggs to roll to a tray behind the nests so the chickens can’t get to them.
    If you have lots of birds in your flock, you may want to remove the offenders, because this behavior usually spreads pretty rapidly.

    good luck
  3. xyresicchick

    xyresicchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 5, 2010
    Providence, RI
    wooden, ceramic, or stone eggs.

    place in nest box


    they learn that if they peck em nothing happens... and just learn to ignore the eggs.

    Mine have wooden eggs from mypetchicken.com there are also fake eggs on ebay and other chicken websites.

    good luck!
  4. J.Pryce

    J.Pryce Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 22, 2010
    I have golf balls in the nestboxes, & they figure out they don't have a taste, so in turn they leave the eggs alone, just as stated by the above poster with the fake eggs
  5. jjparke

    jjparke Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2008
    Eat 'em. I mean the chickens not the eggs. I've never had any success breaking them of this habit so I just slaughtered them all and started new. Oh and yes they will teach each other to eat the eggs.
  6. sunnychooks

    sunnychooks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 21, 2007
    I agree with jj. This is a hard habit to break and THEY WILL TEACH THE OTHERS TO DO THIS!!!
    Good luck with the suggestions above, but your best bet would be to remove them from your flock.
  7. medan

    medan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 1, 2010
    I am thinking your right the thing is I have 34 hens guess I need to figure out who it is or I was thinking of getting some plastic colanders and cutting an egg size hole in them and then put it over the bottom of the nesting box with enough room so that eggs fall down into straw and chicken can’t get at it what do you think?
  8. sunnychooks

    sunnychooks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 21, 2007
    That sounds like an interesting idea IF you can get your hens to sit and lay eggs in one. Perhaps a "trap nest" would help you figure out who the egg eaters are. Whoever is trapped in a nesting box without an egg over an extended period of time would be suspect.
    I dunno. Just an idea. [​IMG]
  9. BriarRose Farm

    BriarRose Farm New Egg

    Jan 23, 2011
    I have a small commercial flock. Unfortunately there's not much to be done once they get started. They have to be removed from the flock.

    With that said, some "egg eaters" get started due to a diet deficiency, or competitiveness between the hens. I have found egg eaters in my flock by carefully watching them. Most chickens lay at the same time each day, so you can figure out who by the time and then watch them. Collecting the eggs several times a day stops a lot of egg eating also.
  10. 3goodeggs

    3goodeggs pays attention sporadically

    May 22, 2009
    North Central Florida
    I caught mine yellow beaked today. I brought her to my husband and said,"We made the rolling egg boxes, but she was on her side with her neck straightened out reaching in, and starting on another egg. What do we do kill her?"
    His reply, 'Yep. Or I can add and extension to the box so she can't reach." He is such a softy.
    I was looking forward to soup. (not really, i am a softy too. [​IMG] )

    But we did put a blue zip tie on her leg so we can Identify her later if the egg eating doesn't stop. Then she goes into a separate cage with mustard eggs until she gets the idea that they are no longer yummy.

    I was in and out about five times today gathering eggs. she still managed to eat about six eggs.

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