Little Buzz laying soft-shelled eggs again!


7 Years
Sep 9, 2012
My troublesome little tuxedo golden button girl, Buzz, hasn't laid for a while while we did some household rearrangement. The new setup for the four single quail girls includes a light fixture, and one of my other girls, Joan, has started laying HUGE perfect eggs.
Buzz laid a soft-shell yesterday and she and the girls had a grand time breaking it and spreading yolky mess all over everything. Today she's laid an egg again and it's not a soft shell but it is all white and very thin.
She and Joan have the same diet: 25% protein feed, high quality seed, daily fresh greens and other veggies, bugs twice a week, and unlimited access to crushed oyster shell. Joan's eggs are massive and perfectly formed every day. Buzz's are small, weak- or soft-shelled, and she'll often skip days between laying.
My quail are about nine or ten weeks old, and the other two girls in the pen with Buzz and Joan haven't started laying yet but i think they might soon.

What's wrong with Little Buzz and what can i do to get her laying normal eggs?
This is from Jodi McDonald's book, "A closer look at Button Quail"
(can be bought here: Bracken Ridge Ranch - Button Quail Eggs

"Calcium, phosphorus and or vitamin d-3 were in improper amounts in diet.

Antibiotics or medicated feed was used.

Breeding stock was kept in an environment that was too warm or not ventilated.
disease such as infectious bronchitis or EDS (egg drop syndrome) occurred

Eggs passed prematurely through oviduct.

Hen was older, these hens tend to have a higher incidence of soft-shelled or shell-less eggs."

With this in mind I would ask?
How old she is?
Is she eating with the rest of the birds?
Do you mix oyster shell in with the food or just offer it in a separate dish?
Are they in a wire cage?
Do they get enough direct sunlight? if no then do you use a full spectrum light bulb?

hope this helps...

Thanks for your reply!
She's about nine weeks.
I've watched her eat, and she seems to eat as much as the others. They graze their dishes throughout the day, often as a group.
Oyster shell is mixed in with an egg/dried bug treat mix that they get every other day, and also constantly available in a separate dish which is right next to their food.
They're in a wire cage with a deep pan, but my mated female is in a similar cage in the same part of the house and she's laying fine.
I have a full-spectrum reptile light on every day and about once a week, weather permitting, they are taken to a secure outdoor pen to get some direct sunshine.

I put some apple cider vinegar into their drinking water yesterday, thinking it might help somehow. As of today every female, even the two who weren't laying yet, laid a perfect normal egg.

So Buzz seems to be okay again. I guess she just likes to worry me.

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