Please advice for broken egg in broody's clutch!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Aun <HIS><, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. Aun <HIS><

    Aun <HIS>< Songster

    Jun 28, 2007
    New Hampshire
    I'm having a heck of a time. My Buff Orp went broody, and after three days, one of the eggs broke in her clutch and got egg all over most of the others. I took out all the eggs and all the smelly nesting and gave her new bedding, 2 of the old eggs back that were fine, and some new ones to make 6. Well, since she brooded on the nest that most of the hens lay in, every time she left the nest to eat or stretch, one from a line of the hens would run in and lay an egg, leave, and another would go in... lol. The clutch grew from 6 to 14 over a week. Well, we just hit our 7 day mark, and an egg broke again! My Delaware was in the nest, acting broody, and wouldn't let the Orp back in, even though she was FURIOUS.

    Can the eggs be washed? I know the pores on the shells are probably clogged, and that they probably can't survive. But now what do I do with all of these 1/3 of the way incubated eggs? But if they can be washed, I'd really rather do that... I don't want to crack open developing chicks to deal with the eggs!

    I moved the Orp to a better nest, washed the smelly goo off the eggs and gave them back to her in her new nest while I wait for input about whether the washing will end in a successful hatch or not. I gave the Delaware new eggs to brood also, and marked all of them with the date, so I can check the clutch every day and take out the new ones.

    Any ideas why an egg keeps breaking? They have strong shells, Oyster Shell at will, Layer Pellets at will, BOSS every day, and some scratch every day, as well as all table scraps. I don't know what's wrong...

    Thank you soooo much, in advance, for your insight.... I appreciate all of you guys and your wisdom, more than you know.

  2. jessica117

    jessica117 Songster

    Apr 23, 2008
    SE Tennessee
    I have always heard not to wash them. Someone more experienced will have to answer that one.

    My guess on the breaking is she's getting startled, possibly by the line of hens trying to drive her from her nest.

  3. steffpeck

    steffpeck Songster

    Mar 25, 2007
    Erda, UT
    I don't really know about washing the eggs, but I sure feel for you with them hens laying eggs in the nesting box your broody is in. I tried moving my broody, but she wouldn't stay anywhere else. My other hens would just squeeze into the nesting box with her and lay their eggs. She was sitting on 8, but daily it would grow to 13-14 eggs, I marked the ones she was sitting on and had to remove the others every day. Good Luck on your hatch!!

  4. Lammie

    Lammie In the Brooder

    Jun 25, 2008
    You should not wash them, as the egg has a natural patina that keeps it cleaner. Washing away that bloom will make the egg more likely to get bacteria in the shell and kill the embryo. Hens break the eggs getting in and out of the nest.

    You might try to clean up the mess and then candle the remaining eggs if they got really nasty, to see if the chick is still viable inside.
  5. kellim

    kellim Songster

    Jun 19, 2008
    SC, GA Border
    I have washed mine before, actually the one that hatched out today I washed right after the hen left them, which was about 10 days ago I think? and it turned out okay. In my opinion it made a good difference that I washed off the egg because it had chicken poop and blood from the other egg that the opossum got all over it and I figured it was at more of a danger of getting contaminated from all that than the water I washed it with. Just my experience.
  6. Pine Grove

    Pine Grove Songster

    Jul 18, 2007
    Lakeland, Ga
    You can wash them...hold them under warm runing water and scrub them with a tooth brush...
  7. dacjohns

    dacjohns People Cracker Upper

    To wash or not to wash. I say spot clean them with a minimum of water.

    Why do they keep breaking? My guess is big clumsy birds in a small area.

    I think you really need to get the broody and her clutch separated from the rest of the flock. This is going to keep happening and the little peeps will be at the mercy of the big birds.
  8. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

    Oct 13, 2007
    I had a broody break two eggs under her - she was full of goop and so were the other eggs.

    I took her out, my hubby held the broody in a towel and rubbed her belly as clean as possible.

    I removed the eggs, changed bedding, and TRIED to clean the eggs off - dry wipe - didn't work....

    I ran off and got a tupperware with warm water and had to dunk the eggs and wipe - still didn't get all the goop off.

    I had 6 eggs left at that point. 3 didn't develop, one didn't hatch - I had two chicks hatch at the end of all that.
  9. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

    Oct 13, 2007
    Just to add.

    I had other hens laying in my broody's nest, I finally put up a cage of sorts around her nest box, I gave her enough room to get out and poop - gave her food and water. Solved the problem of other eggs.....

    I removed the cage when the chicks were a week old.

    Here is a pic of her set up - the cardboard on the top was to prevent the others from climbing up and pooping in her food and water.


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