My hens are eating their eggs...all of a sudden!!!!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Equine_Angel, May 17, 2011.

  1. Equine_Angel

    Equine_Angel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 25, 2010
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    Okay...we had an average of 22 eggs per day with our hens and now all of a sudden they are starting to eat their eggs and becoming broody. Is this just a broody thing they are doing? We are only keeping one hen to be broody and she is taking care of herself nicely, but we are making sure we remove the other hens to prevent any more from becoming broody.

    Any thoughts?

    E_A
     
  2. squeak1387

    squeak1387 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You know I have been having the exact same problem. I have not gotten any eggs from my hens in about a week. Aside from yesterday when I caught a hen laying so I snatched it up before anything could happen. Id love to find out why this is happening and how to stop it as well. But I am glad that I'm not the only one with this problem.
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    I don't know what you are seeing to make you think they are eating the eggs. It is quite possible that hens are eating the eggs, but egg eating has nothing to do with going broody.

    The first thing I suspect when eggs start to go missing is that one or more hens are hiding eggs from you. This is not usually a 100% drop in eggs, but it sure can be noticable.

    If some of them are missing, it coluld be one of many things eating them other than the hens. Some eat them on the spot and leave evidence behind, some eat them whole and leave no evidience, and some take the eggs away to eat them. Raccoons, skunks, possums, and rats come to mind immediately if some are missing but with evidence maybe left behind. A snake will eat a few and leave no evidence, but I've found that a snake will not visit every day or get them all. Depending on the size of fhe snake, I find they take 4 to 6 at a time and visit maybe once every three days. That can vary, of course. It could be a fox doing this. If all eggs are missing every day, my first question is whether the family dog is eating them. You cannot totally rule out a human taking them.

    When hens go broody, they quit laying.

    When hen's molt they pretty much quit laying.

    Just some quick thoughts.
     
  4. squeak1387

    squeak1387 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2011
    bronson, fl
    I thought it was weird, but I have actually seen one of my hens peck a hole in and egg, pick it up and run over to the corner of the pen and finish eating it.
     
  5. Equine_Angel

    Equine_Angel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 25, 2010
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    Yeah...there are some egg shells left behind. I know that it is not any critters eating the eggs because I am outside with them at all times and our Roosters would be calling ALERT till kingdom come if someone came to their area. Also, all the nesting boxes will be full of chickens and nothing will be happening. I don't see any going through a molting stage but they may be starting. I will be keeping a close eye on their eggs today and take their eggs throughout the day.

    I just found it quite odd. There are also no hiding spots that I have found...mind you, they are darn smart birds...they probably have done something to them.

    Detective E_A is out on a mission [​IMG]
     
  6. snowflake

    snowflake Chillin' With My Peeps

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    my daughter swore her hens were eating her eggs, her DH even "saw" one of the white ones eating an egg, turned out coons were getting in and stealing them, neighbor got 8 big fat ones in 1 day, then she spotted another on in the tree near the coop, ..... any way a critter could be getting in? they are very sneaky.
     
  7. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady Premium Member

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    Protein! Birds need more protein this time of year.
    Add meat protein if you can but the BOSS are 33% and can help. Mine are actually craving meat proteins though so I am feeding them hard boiled eggs and ....chicken.

    I have heard this from everyone about egg eating. They are not after the calcium as much as they want the yolk. Trust me.
     
  8. Fritatta

    Fritatta Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 16, 2011
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    yes - increase protein - game bird starter 24% protein or supplement with sunflower seed.

    Purina Layena is only 16% (I think thats right) and it doesnt seem to be quite enough, unless your chickens can free range for bugs.
     
  9. Equine_Angel

    Equine_Angel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 25, 2010
    Brentwood Bay, B.C.
    We have been going in and out of the coop all day today and we have only picked up 9 eggs today. They have free feed of 18% feed and we cook food for them everyday (bread, cabbage, potatoes, carrots, beets, you name it...everything).

    Every single time we have gone in there, all the nesting boxes would be full. Today there has been no evidence of eggs being eaten, but maybe it is just the drastic change in the weather and they could be preparing to molt. It has gone from 10C to 17C in the span of one day. The weather has been crazy for us here on the Island.

    As for critters, the only thing that would be able to go in there are voles. The coons would damage the fence if they tried climbing it as it is only chicken wire. The coop area is also completely out in the open...the do not like open spaces over here.

    I will give it a week as this has only started to occur in the last two days of the drastic weather change.

    Detective E_A [​IMG]
     
  10. FuzzyButtsFarm

    FuzzyButtsFarm Rest in Peace 1950-2013

    I agree up the protien. I started feeding Neutrena Nature Wise 18% All Flock and giving ground egg shell to the layers. They also get a treat twice a day of 1/2 BOSS 1/4 scratch and 1/4 wild bird seed. Along with any leftovers. Today one of my 10wk pullets did the "squat" and after I scrached her back she did the "shake". Maybe its the feed? [​IMG]
     

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