how to tell if a chicken is eating the eggs

Black Jaque

In the Brooder
7 Years
Sep 7, 2012
I've been finding strange evidence of an egg eater in the coop. I find what appears to be the membrane liner and stains in the wood shavings that look like yolk/white. But not a trace of eggshell. It is always in the coop under the roosting bars, so far we've never found such in the nest boxes.

I have 5 young pullets that just started laying a few weeks ago. I'm hoping I don't have to search out the culprit and cull her.

Any suggestions?
Sometimes young pullets lay some pretty funny eggs, could be someone layer a soft shelled or shell less egg and it fell to the ground and broke. Since they're young I'd keep an eye on it but wouldn't worry overmuch about an egg eater yet.
Soft shelled egg? Does that happen? Never heard of it, not that I've been into chickens for more than a few months.
Yes, It happens when they are not getting enough calcium in their diet. Make sure you age giving layers free choice oyster shell or well crushed egg shells (I heat mine to kill bacteria). If you give egg shells, you don't want them to be recognizable so you don't encourage egg eating.

You might give them some milk in the short term.

The fact that it is under the roosting bars in consistent with soft shell eggs
whew! Calcium it is. Cooked, crushed eggshells; milk; cottage cheese; yogurt? All of the above?
That sounds like the work of a rat snake. They get the egg, swallow it whole, break it inside and eat the insides, the shell is digested, and they throw up the membrane. You will find what appears to be broken soft shelled eggs. We encourage the rat snakes and actually leave an egg there for them because they keep rats away.

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