My 1st EGG!! and a few questions

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by bluefx4, Jul 25, 2011.

  1. bluefx4

    bluefx4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 25, 2011
    Ok its been about 5 months since I started with my chickens. I have two RIR and one Americana. They have been great to work with. Easy to feed, water, and clean. I got my first egg last night. It looked like one of my RIR's. It was small.
    My questions are:

    What should I line there nesting boxes with? I curently have pine shavings in them.

    How long will it take for the eggs to become bigger?

    When is it ok to start eating them?

    How long can the eggs sit out in the heat of summer and I still can eat them? Sometimes we go away for the weekend.... would it be safe to eat the eggs I find when I come back.... I would not know how old they were?


    Thanks
     
  2. saddina

    saddina Internally Deranged

    May 2, 2009
    Desert, CA
    Quote:
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    What should I line there nesting boxes with? I curently have pine shavings in them.

    The most used are probably pine shavings, straw, dried grass cuttings, or hay. Others use things like Spanish moss, carpet, rubber pads, or shredded newspaper. I use whatever I have handy. I've used pine shavings and they work fine.

    How long will it take for the eggs to become bigger?

    They will probably start getting bigger in a week or two and should gradually continue to get bigger for a while. After their first molt, you should see a nice jump in size.

    When is it ok to start eating them?

    As soon as you can cook them. There is nothing unsafe about their first few eggs. Some pullets may lay some weird-looking eggs when they just get started, (soft-shelled, small, large, wrinkled, no yolk, double yolked) while they get the kinks worked out of their internal egg laying factory but there is nothing unsafe about those eggs. Most are pretty normal. Those myths and urban legends about the first eggs not being good are not true.

    How long can the eggs sit out in the heat of summer and I still can eat them? Sometimes we go away for the weekend.... would it be safe to eat the eggs I find when I come back.... I would not know how old they were?

    As Saddina said, it depends on a few things. If they are fertile, you can get a little development if the eggs are in the 80's Fahrenheit. Not enough to hatch, of course, but they can develop some. That is one reason some hatches are a little early, high temperatures during storing the eggs. That does not make them unsafe to eat but many people, including me, don't like to eat them if they can see development. In some cultures, those would be a delicacy.

    Chicken eggs are made to last for weeks in a nest without going bad. That's how chickens can lay an egg a day for two weeks then hatch them. The cooler the temperature, the longer the eggs last. The shells are porous but resist bacteria getting in. The hen puts a coating, called bloom, on the outside of the egg when she lays it to help keep bacteria out. The bloom is that wet shiny stuff on them when they are first laid. The inner membrane also resists bacteria. That does not mean that bacteria cannot get in. They can, especially if the egg is dirty or gets wet.

    There are a few things you can do to check if the egg is bad. First, hold it to your nose and sniff it. If it smells bad, toss it.

    Then do a float test. Put the egg in water. If it is fresh, it will sink to the bottom. If it is old, it will float on top. As the egg ages, it loses moisture and the air sac gets larger. After a while, the air sac gets large enough that the egg floats. If it is in between, it will stand up on the pointy end. Even if it floats, it does not mean that the egg is bad. It just means it is older. As long as bacteria have not entered, it should still be safe. But it floating makes it suspicious.

    Lastly, crack it in a separate bowl before you mix it with anything else. Look at it and smell it. You should be able to tell if you want to use it pretty easily. But do the sniff test first.
     
  4. bluefx4

    bluefx4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 25, 2011
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    Thats funny
     
  5. bluefx4

    bluefx4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 25, 2011
    I thank both of yall for taking the time to respond to a newbie like me. Good info. Thats what makes this a great site. Thank you
     
  6. ChickiKat

    ChickiKat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 10, 2011
    Eastern Kansas
    Quote:
    Thats funny

    X2
     
  7. lynnemabry

    lynnemabry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 24, 2010
    Beautiful Lake County
    i like my chickens because i dont have to over think them.

    feed , water, collect eggs, eat eggs

    if only the dogs gave me usable gifts every day
    in fact of all my kids and animals only the chickens give back every day [​IMG]
     
  8. cluckcluckboom

    cluckcluckboom Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 18, 2011
    we use straw in ours
     

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