Low egg production - it's mice!

sewingca

Songster
10 Years
Dec 2, 2009
341
4
123
Jacksonville, FL
We may have an egg eater in our bunch. We have 2 mature roosters, 12 hens and 1 undermined, Soledad. We have been gathering 1 or 2 eggs a day lately. A couple of times, I've found bits of shell in the coop. Several of the girls are molting. Is this the reason? If someone is eating the eggs, who is it and what do we do? Soledad is the most likely suspect since she/he is the newest. Help, please.
 

Shortstuff112

Chirping
7 Years
Sep 9, 2012
110
3
81
Maryland
there are two things i would like to say-

1. Hens do not lay very often in the winter because it gets darker ealier so put a light in their coop!

2. Do they lay in a nesting box? if so, do you find any yolks or egg whites? do you find the yolks or egg whites on the ground or florr of the coop?
 

sewingca

Songster
10 Years
Dec 2, 2009
341
4
123
Jacksonville, FL
There are nesting boxes in the coop. One of our girls often drops her egg wherever! Today is the first day I've found more than shell. In Florida, it is warm and light longer than up north. I've had the girls for a few years so I know their routine. This is puzzling. Thanks for your thoughts, Shortstuff.
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sewingca

Songster
10 Years
Dec 2, 2009
341
4
123
Jacksonville, FL
We spotted mice in the coop! It's not one of the girls getting the eggs, it's varmints! Now, we've got to figure a way to curtail their activity. My brother has said something about a stick and water in a deep pail. I said, have at it! He will be handling this tomorrow.

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I'm glad it's not one of our girls.
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gigglssmls

In the Brooder
7 Years
Oct 28, 2012
60
0
41
Sewingca I have seen droppings a couple times in our coop and so PLEASE do let me know what your brother does to remedy your problem...... I would love to hear in case I ever need to do it.
 

sewingca

Songster
10 Years
Dec 2, 2009
341
4
123
Jacksonville, FL
My brother has a pail (like a 5 gallon bucket of paint) half filled with water and straw. The straw is to camouflage the water. The mouse strolls into it and then can't get out. I searched "mice" on this website and found something similar. It's the same pail, but with a wire stretched across through a coke can that has a bit of peanut butter or something sticky to attract the mice. It appears that the can will roll and mouse will fall into the bucket. The link that goes with it is no longer there. I printed the picture and told my husband to show it to my brother when he finds that there are no mice in his bucket! Both these gentlemen are retired. I'm the only one working these days!

Thanks for the input, all. I'm hoping to report soon that mice are gone and egg production is back to normal. Oh, by the way, in my "mice" search, I found a pic of a chicken with a mouse in her beak. I think all my girls prefer dead stuff. Some of them, but not all, like worms!
 

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