Pink eggs.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Sylviaanne, Jan 31, 2015.

  1. Sylviaanne

    Sylviaanne Overrun With Chickens

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    One of my girls is laying a pretty pink egg that has a kind of unusual "blush" (?) on them. The shells don't look like other eggs because of this "blush" and I am wondering if anyone thinks that there would be any kind of problem with incubating them?

    I will try to remember to take pictures tomorrow.
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    No, it will not be a problem. Egg shell color will have no effect on incubation. That shell is probably tinted through its thickness so it might be hard to candle, but it should not affect hatching.
     
  3. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    Does she always lay eggs like this? A number of breeds do lay a pinkish colored egg. If she is only one of a number of hens of the same breed that is doing this, then without seeing a photo, I venture to guess that it sounds like she is getting extra bloom on them...which is the final antimicrobial covering that is placed on the egg before it is laid.

    Sometimes the bloom can be so thick as to look like a coating of rubbery shellac or the final pigmentation is heavy enough to be rubbed off. Extra thick pigmentation and bloom can interfere with hatching, as Marans and Welsummer breeders are aware, and some prefer to lightly buff or sand heavily pigmented eggs to improve hatching....but it doesn't sound like you are dealing with that.

    If it simply makes them look rosy on the outside, but they still look normal in every way, they are usable and safe to eat and should be safe to set. If it has a thick coating that can be rubbed off, that will likely pose a problem with air flow.

    If she is a new layer, she will likely settle into a better egg laying pattern as her egg tract matures; otherwise, her egg tract may be malformed or look to crowding issues or stress issues that may be disturbing her in the process of lay.

    Likely it is nothing to worry about, and in some minds, desirable if it just gives a pretty blush color to the egg.

    Many are striving to develop lines of certain breeds that contain a blush color in the bloom that applied over brown or dark brown eggs produces a purple or plum appearance.

    If however the egg shell looks weird or other external or internal malformations are present, then obviously you wouldn't want to set it as it could be either serious structural issues in the hen or possible disease such as Infectious Bronchitis or Newcastle.

    Post a photo so that we can see exactly what your concerns are.
    LofMcj

    EDITED FOR CONTENT to respond better to incubation question.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2015
  4. dekel18042

    dekel18042 Chillin' With My Peeps

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  5. Sylviaanne

    Sylviaanne Overrun With Chickens

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    They are hard to see through but so far I think they are infertile. I have already tossed one last month, it went past the due date about a week so I figured it wasn't going to hatch.
     
  6. Sylviaanne

    Sylviaanne Overrun With Chickens

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    First off: I hatched 22 eggs that a hen abandoned last year in May, I added another 10 and they all hatched. These are mixed breeds and I don't know which one is laying the pink eggs. I will post pics in a few minutes but it is hard to tell it is pink in the photos. The blush on the egg looks like the kind of thing you see on grapes that can be rubbed off. The blush on the eggs can not be rubbed off and I wet my finger and tried to rub it off and when it dried, it still looked like it had be powdered. So, since it can't be rubbed off, does that mean that air flow should be getting through? I had several more hatches last year but none as good as that one, so I don't know how old this specific hen is. I do not think she was from that first hatch last year because those hens have been laying for a little over a month. As for stress, yes, they have all be pretty stressed. We had a raccoon last summer and now another one plus we just killed a opossum. They are not laying well for several reasons, one: they are just coming of age, two: they slow down during winter and three: the predators. I have about 20 hens and I'm only getting up to 3 eggs a day and the average I'd say is one a day because some days I don't get as many and some days I don't find any at all. The only weird look to the egg is the blush on it, size, shape, feel of the shell seems normal.
     
  7. Sylviaanne

    Sylviaanne Overrun With Chickens

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    These girls were hatched starting last May and I have found with my chickens in my area that if they are not laying before it gets cold, they slow waaaaay down or even stop. I was not surprised when they didn't start laying at around 24 weeks old but I had hoped they would have started sooner than they did which was in Oct and it was slow because of what I said above. They don't seem to like the cold. LOL

    Yes, these eggs are bigger than the other eggs, noticeable if you lay them together.
     
  8. Sylviaanne

    Sylviaanne Overrun With Chickens

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    I thought I had more than one in the incubators but I only found one. It is hard to tell apart from the light tan ones but here it is.

    [​IMG] The blush egg is the one on the top left, marked 1/21. The others are a light tan.

    [​IMG] Still in the top left corner but here you can see the light tan against the pink blush. It does look much more pink in person.

    [​IMG] Blush egg is in the top right corner, again, it is hard to see that it is pink.
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    One way to better tell where the pink is coming from is to crack a pink egg open, remove the membrane, and look at the inside of the egg shell. If it is bright white, the hen is putting that color on top of the shell after the shell is put on in the shell gland. If the inside of the shell is the same color as the outside, then the pink is being mixed with the shell as it is being put on the shell. If the inside of the egg shell is the same color as the outside it should have no effect on the hatchability of the egg.

    Another way to do this is to lightly sandpaper and egg. If you can sandpaper off the color and are left with a white shell, then it the color is put on after the shell is finished.

    Of course another possibility is that the shell is tinted throughout and more is added to the outside.

    If the inside of the shell is white then I defer to the Lady and to her expertise.

    If you do try to lightly sandpaper the egg or otherwise wash it be careful to maintain as much sterility as you can during handling and incubation. The purpose of the bloom is to help reduce the chance of bacteria getting inside the egg. If you remove that protection, do what you can to keep bacteria away from the egg. That means sterilize the incubator before you start incubation and wash your hands before you handle the eggs. These things you should do anyway.
     
  10. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    I agree with Ridgerunner.

    If it appears the egg shell itself is pinkish, it will have no effect on hatchability.

    Or if it is pigment added to the shell that still seems adhered well and not heavily coating the shell.

    From the photo, and from my personal experience, I think your egg looks like extra bloom. As long as it is not really heavy, it should have no effect...but some have noticed that those shells covered with too much bloom, and heavy pigement (like in dark Marans/Welsummers) can cause lower hatchability due to lowered air flow in the egg....which some breeders recommend gently lightly sanding. I personally have not chosen to sand my Marans eggs, and have had good hatches, but I have not tried hatching the super dark ones nor am I in the Marans business to where I need to watch my percentage of hatchability very closely.

    They only way to know for sure is to try to hatch it, if that is a trait you want to further because it is a pleasing egg.

    If you do not like the appearance it gives, and some hens do have eggs with extra bloom that just always look a bit funky, then I wouldn't hatch chicks from it if you do not plan to breed from them as why bother hatching something you don't want to continue and don't like the eggs from.

    I sell my eggs to offset costs, so I have only a limited tolerance for hens that do not perform up to good egg quality...the family can only eat so many of those which means they are eating grain and not giving me eggs to sell.

    My 2 cents.
    LofMc
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2015

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