How to identify an egg-eating chicken?

TeamChaos

Songster
10 Years
Nov 8, 2009
1,068
12
163
My egg eater was the one with the sticky belly
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I had NO IDEA she was eating so many, I thought the girls had quit laying for winter but then I found a huge jackpot of eggs, a nasty sticky/frozen pile of shells and shavings and suddenly my "poor hen" with the matted feathers became a chicken non grata. ha ha ha! So far, just retrieving eggs quickly has eliminated her habit- I think she was bored in the bad weather and came up with a new hobby.
 

ChickiKat

Songster
8 Years
Jul 10, 2011
1,246
13
131
Eastern Kansas
my egg eater never leaves the coop, she stays in there and fusses over my broody cochin.... I hate to cull her, she is a white crested black polish... but she is a tenacious egg eater.
 

Chicken.Lytle

Songster
9 Years
Oct 19, 2010
1,318
15
141
Montgomery County, TX
Isolation really does help. In my most recent reoccurrance of egg-eating, Buffy was laying thin eggs and Vo was accidentally breaking them against the fake egg (and then eating the mess on her belly).

As Wolfwoman suggested above, I isolated the egg eater into the chick coop and moved the most aggressive youngster from the chick coop to the adult coop. There was drama, but everything worked out.
 

chiliconholly

In the Brooder
8 Years
Jun 3, 2011
15
0
22
One of my babies layed a shell-less egg last spring
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so everyone decided to bicker over it and try and show eachother who was boss
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we had a couple eggs be cracked open after that, but somehow they just grew out of it.part of the problem is: My male duck protects his ladies egg (and any other egg layed in the duck area) and oherwise, we just make sure we get the eggs promptly, and they just quit trying to break and eat the eggs
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saddina

Internally Deranged
10 Years
May 2, 2009
7,993
19
261
Desert, CA
Have you tried a mustard egg yet? empty out an egg, and fill it with mustard, then reseal it. Hens hate it, and it usually will stop egg munches. Now if it's a soft egg, all bets are off, you need to up the calcium. I offer cuttlebone if i start finding softer eggs, it gives the hens something to do, and it ups the calicum.
 

wingsofglory

Songster
8 Years
Feb 15, 2011
316
6
100
Palmer Alaska
To catch the culprit, I had to take a chair and novel out into the coop and just watched them, while I read the book. Paid off. Very alarming to see a hen laying her egg with four hens perched waiting for the egg to fall, then fighting over it once laid - the layer turned around and joined the fight.

Another came in alone and turned around and broke and ate her own egg.

For my new flock I'm going to make the roll-out nest boxes out of plywood as shown by BYC member Opa. Do a search for "Opa's roll-out nestboxes". He has wonderful pictures showing construction steps, materials, and measurements and everything - even sharing what works and doesn't work with the hens - real world testing.

Other thing this time, I'm going to blow out some real eggs and fill with hot wax that will cool and harden. I'll put them in the nests. Hopefullly they'll think all eggs are like that inside.
 

HershelMS

In the Brooder
6 Years
Apr 17, 2013
35
7
25
if you have free range chickens and your birds go out for the daily dust bath.... its easy to find the culprit...
dirty bill and neck gives them away everytime... I have found egg eating less frequent among my pullets that
i treat with meal worms... egg eating is indicitave of one of two things:
1. Protien deficiency
2. over population (more freqent with raising coop where eggs are fertile)...
as for the cure... the only one i have ever found is catch the culprit and separate it as a pet or serve it with cream potatos and gravy...
 

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