laying two eggs, one formed one not so much...

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by 2016chickenmom, Oct 15, 2016.

  1. 2016chickenmom

    2016chickenmom New Egg

    Oct 15, 2016
    Hello there,

    New to BYC, thanks for having me.

    First time chicken mom, received two hens from a friend, he told me they were approximately nine months old when I got them three months ago. I have what I believe to be a Production Red (Lucy) that lays a light cream colored egg and a Rhode Island Red (Ethel) that lays a darker brownish egg. He told me he had Leghorns and Rhode Island Reds. (When I first got them we averaged 13 eggs a week between the two).

    My problem is with the Rhode Island Red. For the third time in the last month she has gone two days in a row without laying an egg. On the third day she lays one normally formed egg and one with about half of a formed shell and the yolk and white just sitting there without the formed shell around it. So one completely wasted egg. She has always had very weak shells, despite trying Purina Premium Layena crumbles (lots of additives, I told the guy at the feed store about the weak shells). Switching to this Premium food has made no difference in shell strength. Missing two days in a row and the day three problem is new since the food switch.

    Thank you in advance for any help or advice you can give.
  2. chickens really

    chickens really True BYC Addict

    A tip....Cut out all Treats....Layers only need 5% of daily ration in treats...A tablespoon per bird..
    Layers need a proper diet...Nutrition is key for egg production...You have Production layers so they need a bit more of a strict diet...

  3. 2016chickenmom

    2016chickenmom New Egg

    Oct 15, 2016
    Thanks for your reply. Let me clarify it's not that I don't have good egg production- I do- I get 13 eggs a week. I am inquiring as to why it could be that one of the chickens skip an egg production day for 48 hours and when this happens she lays 2 eggs at hour 49+. One egg is normal and the second egg within minutes only has half a shell formed with the yolk and white exposed in half the egg. Basically the shell is not formed all the way around. Is there anything I can do to fix this? It is happening more often now. We have had her for 3 months and she is approx 12 months old now. Appreciate any info. Thanks
  4. chickens really

    chickens really True BYC Addict

    Your Bird is young still and needs to workout the glitches...That happens along with other crazy egg laying....She could have an over active reproductive tract too...Wait it out..

  5. FoodFreedomNow

    FoodFreedomNow Chillin' With My Peeps

    I acquired a RIR from a local (non-chain) feed store as a chick about a year and a half ago. At first, she regularly laid beautiful, large, medium brown eggs with darker brown speckles. A few months ago, she started having difficulty with her eggs, laying thin-shelled, broken, or rubber-shelled eggs, and laying inconsistently. I even saw her push out a rubbery liquid mess outside the coop one day. She was on a layer feed with free choice oyster shell, so it wasn't a lack of calcium. Despite the egg weirdness, she seemed otherwise healthy.

    Her egglaying became more consistent for a while, but they remained thin-shelled and sometimes misshapen. Sometimes the color was off - partly pigmented or unusually pale. She started to look like she was molting, but it was more than that - her condition just wasn't normal. When she stopped laying again, I isolated her in a crate to closely monitor her. She manifested symptoms of egg yolk peritonitis and was euthanized when it was clear she was suffering and wouldn't get better; near the end, she wouldn't eat or drink, barely moved around, and runny yolky-looking poop just dribbled out.

    My experience leads me to believe that some hens just have reproductive problems that, sadly, lead to an early demise. It may not be the case with yours (and I hope it isn't), but you'll want to watch for symptoms of EYP. I've also noticed, anecdotally, that RIRs seem to be mentioned often in threads discussing it, like this one:
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!

    Did your friend hatch the chick or get it as a day old so they and you are positive of it's age?

    It could be any number of about 1 year old, she may be going into an early molt.
    Most birds don't have their first full annual molt until 16-20 months, but earlier is possible and funky eggs can happen before and after a molt.
    I had a 9 month old molt last year....didn't lay for months.

    Could also be that she is ceasing to lay for the winter, if you live in the northern hemisphere.
    Again most pullets lay pretty steady for their first full year but anomalies happen.

    She could have a genetic physical deformity or a nutrition uptake issue....or it could be the onset of some disease as FFN suggested.

    Unfortunately not all birds are consistent layers.

    What were you feeding before the switch?

    I prefer to feed a flock raiser/grower/finisher 20% protein crumble full time to all ages and genders, as non-layers(chicks, males and molting birds) do not need the extra calcium that is in layer feed and chicks and molters can use the extra protein. Makes life much simpler to store and distribute one type of chow that everyone can eat. I do grind up the crumbles (in the blender) for the chicks for the first week or so.

    The higher protein crumble also offsets the 8% protein scratch grains and other kitchen/garden scraps I like to offer. I adjust the amounts of other feeds to get the protein levels desired with varying situations.

    Calcium should be available at all times for the layers, I use oyster shell mixed with rinsed, dried, crushed chicken egg shells in a separate container.

    Animal protein (mealworms, a little cheese - beware the salt content, meat scraps) is provided during molting and if I see any feather eating.

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