Naughty hen

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jhampton425, Jul 17, 2016.

  1. jhampton425

    jhampton425 New Egg

    Jul 17, 2016
    Hello :) I am new to BYC and to raising chickens in general. One of my girls decided she no longer wants to lay in the nest box. Instead, she made her own nest. Normally I don't mind hunting for eggs but, my other hen breaks and I assume eats the egg. I have heard this is a hard behavior to break. She only destroys the egg that is outside of the nest box. Any ideas? I hate seeing so many eggs wasted.

    Thank you!!!!
  2. Molpet

    Molpet Chicken Obsessed

    Sep 7, 2015
    N. Illinois
    My Coop
    the existing nest box may be private so the eggeater doesn't see the eggs as much...if it's not try adding some privacy to the existing box for the one who lays outside of it
    golf balls or fake eggs where the hen lays may hep teach the egg eater that eggs hurt
    usually egg eating is a need for protein issue, so try adding some meat to the diet
    my hens have been making new nests right before they think about going broody
  3. Pendragonz

    Pendragonz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2015
  4. SunflowerTheBun

    SunflowerTheBun Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 8, 2016
    Victoria, Australia.

    Hello! :welcome
    I agree - you should put golf balls (hens think they look like eggs) in the nest to teach the hen that this is the correct place to lay. (this is also used to try to get a hen to go broody)
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Fake eggs and/or golf balls in the nests can entice them to lay in the long as nests are adequate to begin with.
    Easy to reach, nicely sized, etc.

    More info on the situation might many and how old are birds, pics of nests and coop, etc.
    Are the eggs thin shelled?
    Are layers new to laying?
    Is feed providing enough protein and calcium?
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016
  6. jhampton425

    jhampton425 New Egg

    Jul 17, 2016
    Hello :) my birds are 9 months. My buff always laid in her nestbox until she went broody a few times and now she lays where she pleases. I would say her egg shells do seem a bit thin. I have 3 birds.
  7. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Hello and welcome to BYC!

    Make sure your nest boxes are very clean and bug free. If they get too messy for the hens, and sometimes they appear clean but the hen doesn't think so, LOL, they will stop using the nest boxes. So you might give them a thorough cleaning and dusting for bugs and such.

    As for thin eggshells, this can stem from Coccidiosis, problems with her eggshell gland or maybe just a lack of calcium. You could try using some human Caltrate on her. Break a pill in half and give her half a pill a day. I break this half down further and put the pieces in raisins. They don't know they are being medicated. If the thinner shells are from a lack of calcium or she can't absorb it well, this will help her greatly.

    Does she have any whitish diarrhea? This can indicate Coccidiosis and this can make eggshells thin. You might get them on some Corid if this is the case.

    Enjoy your birds and good luck! :)

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