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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Beckymca, Jul 4, 2010.
Ooops. Hi Everyone, I'm not only new to this board but also brand new to raising chickens. I hope to learn tons from you all. But here is where I'm at. A friend hatched out 14 Buff Orpintons and I took them home. I have 7 in the coop and 7 outside but with a light to keep them warm, they range in age from 5 days to 5 weeks, so far so good with the little guys! Another friend heard I was getting chicks and asked me if I wanted some big birds so I also dragged home 6 assorted hens. I have them in a seperate area. They were pretty beat up and I was told they weren't laying. I have no idea how old they are but I brang them home last Tuesday and had 2 eggs on Thursday, 2 on Friday, 2 Sat and 1 this am. They seem to be comfortable. I built a fenced in area and they totally enjoyed being out today. So my question is I got a 2nd egg tonight and it was like a rubber ball, squishy..... Could there be something wrong or is it more likely that a young hen is laying???? I've converted a horse stall into a coop for them, the young ones are in a large cage still. I'm working the young ones in with the month old ones as they feather out. Can I work towards putting them all together or will it be best to keep the 6 older bird away from the younger stock? The roos can be returned to my friend once I know who is what. Thanks for any ideas on the squishy egg and ideas or plan for keeping them 2 flocks or letting them together. Oh and I like that the young birds are all pure bred, thinking maybe keeping them apart from the others may be best? Input needed!!!! Nice to meet everyone!! Thanks in advance for your time, expereince and advise!!!!
Hi welcome to BYC and welcome to chicken keeping from a fellow Mainer.
You have a lot of questions, but I'll get you started: the rubbery eggs may be coming from a new laying hen, but it's most likely (regardless of which hen it comes from) a sign of low calcium. You should pick up some oyster shell or feed crushed egg shells back to your laying birds.
I would keep the younger chickens away from the older ones until they're about the same size. There's plenty of threads on how to re-integrate them.
As far as keeping the purebreds apart, if you're not keeping roosters there's really no point.
THANK YOU! I have been giving them their egg shells back and I got some grit but it is not oyster shells. Someone told me they lay better with a roo. I'd almost like not to have one as they are too noisy for me. Do I really need a rooster? Again thank you!!!!
Welcome to BYC! You'll find this place to be a source of great knowledge.
You do not need a rooster for a hen to lay eggs. She lays either way. If you want babies then you need a rooster and some kind of incubator or sitting hen.
I would also suggest you read through the FAQs located here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=1198
Thanks again. On dial up so makes for slow reading but I've skimmed through some of it!!!