Laying in dirt

Rommy

Chirping
Apr 17, 2019
65
117
97
NC
Hi folks! My largest Maran (she is a big girl) is seemingly laying most of her eggs in dirt. When I find them they are most often discolored and I am wondering if they are healthy to eat. Has any bacteria possibly penetrated the shell during the eggs time in the dirt? She lays the largest eggs of all of my hens. I only have 4 hens and 3 nests; so I know she has ample room to go in a nest if she chose to. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks!
 

HeyHeyWW

Songster
Oct 9, 2017
167
446
136
Florida
Is she a new layer? How old is she?

Hens are very picky when it comes to choosing a spot to lay eggs. Sometimes all of your hens lay eggs in the nest you prepared them. Then there's that one hen who just won't lay her eggs in the nest and will lay it someplace else.

It has happened to me that when I don't pick up the eggs for a while, the eggs seem to be discolored. When I crack those eggs open, they are not good to eat so I don't think you should eat them. Have you left those eggs out there for a while? Or are they freshly laid by the hen?
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
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SW Michigan
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Hi folks! My largest Maran (she is a big girl) is seemingly laying most of her eggs in dirt. When I find them they are most often discolored and I am wondering if they are healthy to eat. Has any bacteria possibly penetrated the shell during the eggs time in the dirt? She lays the largest eggs of all of my hens. I only have 4 hens and 3 nests; so I know she has ample room to go in a nest if she chose to. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks!
It's possible and why I don't eat 'run' eggs.

Is she a new layer? How old is she?
Good questions^^^

Also... are nests big enough for her to be comfortable?
 

Rommy

Chirping
Apr 17, 2019
65
117
97
NC
It's possible and why I don't eat 'run' eggs.

Good questions^^^

Also... are nests big enough for her to be comfortable?
She is about 8 months old and has been laying since about 4 months now. She has laid fine in the nest most of this time; but seems to have started laying in the dirt more consistently over time. The possibility of her being uncomfortable in the nesting boxes is a thought I had not had. Will talk to hubby about what we can do about that. Thanks for the input.
 

Rommy

Chirping
Apr 17, 2019
65
117
97
NC
Is she a new layer? How old is she?

Hens are very picky when it comes to choosing a spot to lay eggs. Sometimes all of your hens lay eggs in the nest you prepared them. Then there's that one hen who just won't lay her eggs in the nest and will lay it someplace else.

It has happened to me that when I don't pick up the eggs for a while, the eggs seem to be discolored. When I crack those eggs open, they are not good to eat so I don't think you should eat them. Have you left those eggs out there for a while? Or are they freshly laid by the hen?
She is about 8 months old and been laying since August. She has laid in the nesting boxes for about 4 months now and only occasionally laid somewhere else; but seems to be getting a habit as of late. I always find all my eggs the same day. Only once have I missed one of her eggs by a day or two at the most.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
71,156
72,229
1,557
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
The possibility of her being uncomfortable in the nesting boxes is a thought I had not had. Will talk to hubby about what we can do about that.
First you'll have to figure if and why she might.
Pics of your nests might give us and you a clue.
Also think about flock dynamics...how many nests, how many laying birds.
Do you have others laying in the nests?
Any new layers, or other changes, since the 'run' eggs started?
 

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