One hen has thin shells- What to do?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by RoyalCoopMom, Dec 27, 2018.

  1. RoyalCoopMom

    RoyalCoopMom Chirping

    Feb 13, 2015
    St Louis
    I have one hen, a 3 year old barred Rock, who lays a very thin shelled egg. The rest of my flock, a two year old and 5 pullets, are fine. In variably when she lays somebody breaks the egg and makes a mess. They have oyster shell available all the time and are on layer feed. What can i do to improve her shells?
  2. WindingRoad

    WindingRoad Songster

    Nov 21, 2018
    I use 20% protein feed. I could send you some shells. Mine are so hard tough to break open of breakfast. I have 1 Buff O, 1 ISABrown, and 2 SLW. All have nice hard shells.
  3. GC-Raptor

    GC-Raptor Crowing

    Jul 26, 2016
    Connecticut, U.S.A.
    Hard Shells require more than just Calcium. Vitamin D, manganese, and a proper Calcium to Phosphorus balance, among other nutrients. All are in a complete feed in proper balance.
    If you give treats and she consumes mostly treats and little feed, that could be why.
    But it could also be age.
    I have 3 hens (Golden Comets) from my first Flock 32 months old. One lays a strong shell, one lays a thinner shell, but not fragile. The third hen retired from laying at 24 months. GC
    Wyorp Rock and aart like this.
  4. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    It could be her age and something is not right in her reproductive organs so she produces her egg to quickly.
    scrambled please likes this.
  5. WindingRoad

    WindingRoad Songster

    Nov 21, 2018
    You forgot PROTEIN. I feed 22%. My advice was a starting point. The major ingredient. I was a hemodialysis nurse. Feed too much C++ and phosphorus can drop. They are inversely proportional. I didn't feed OS over the summer and my shells were just fine. I started because of my new ( to laying) SLW. In health care we complain about Big Pharma. Maybe there is another entity at work in chicken raising. Just saying. Quality feed should have all you want. BTW what do you use for manganese. Or did you mean magnesium.
  6. Rammy

    Rammy Crowing

    Oct 20, 2008
    I get a feed that has calcium already in the pellet. Sorry I dont remember the name at the moment, but I get it at TSC.
    In the winter I get the super layer pellets 22% to mix with thier scratch. I also still mix in oyster shell. They usually eat that last but they still get calcium in thier feed, they just dont know it.
    Even despite all that, I will get a thin shelled egg. So maybe its got something to do with that particular hen.
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    But if one bird out of many on the same diet is laying 'bad' eggs it's the bird, not the diet.

    This too^^^

    Have had a couple thin shell's a messy PITA.
    They go on the cull list.
    Despite trying several supplements on one over the course of a couple months,
    decided it's not worth the hassle....she made great soup.
  8. scrambled please

    scrambled please Songster

    Nov 30, 2010
    I had a weak egg layer, she was a couple years old, so thin I fed then to the dogs. One day she didn’t come out
    of the coop a few days later
    she died. I did try to help her but to no avail.
  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    I agree with @aart it's the bird, not the diet.

    At 3 years of age, she may have a reproductive problem/underlying condition, her shell gland could starting to failing, she may not be absorbing nutrients like she should or there could be a whole slew of other "causes".

    If she were mine, I would provide her with 1/2 tablet human calcium supplement like Caltrate for 2 weeks to see if that makes a difference.

    Keep us posted.
    aart and scrambled please like this.
  10. GC-Raptor

    GC-Raptor Crowing

    Jul 26, 2016
    Connecticut, U.S.A.
    Manganese its in the ingredients list or sometimes in the analysis like this label. Between Sodium and vitamin A. 20181125_090509.jpg

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