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Rogue hen!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by AlletahG, Mar 12, 2015.

  1. AlletahG

    AlletahG Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 21, 2014
    My neighbor called me today to say one of my hens has been hanging around her porch steps lately and may be leaving eggs there. I went to take a peek, and sure enough there were 8 eggs in hidden in a spot just under the porch steps. The hen isn't broody, she just decided she likes that place better than the nest box. Which leads me to these questions:

    How do I break this bad habit? I am guessing I need to confine the rogue hen to the run for a while, but for how long?

    Are the eggs safe to eat? Four of the eggs were cracked, so I tossed them, but the others were surprisingly intact. I live in CT, where there is still a ton of snow on the ground and night time temps have been below freezing. The last couple of days have been in the 40s and 50s. I hate to throw out those last 4 eggs if they are safe to eat, keeping in mind that the oldest one could have been sitting there for over a week (although I would imagine the cracked eggs had been frozen, so the intact eggs were probably laid over the past few days when things warmed up a bit).

    I have 5 hens and two nest boxes. They don't normally seem to mind sharing, and sometimes I'll find two hens sitting in the same box -- next to an empty box, of course -- and seeming perfectly happy.

    Thanks in advance for any advice!
     
  2. Rocky64

    Rocky64 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would confine the hen for at least a week, as for the eggs, I wouldn't eat them. Whenever I find a hidden nest, I pitch the eggs (one time a nest had 8 eggs, all LOOKED fresh, but I wasn't sure so I pitched them) it's better to be safe than sorry, but if you are fairly certain that they are fresh, I guess you could eat them.
     
  3. ShockValue

    ShockValue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How long do you imagine the eggs that people buy from grocery stores are sitting around? 1 week would certainly considered "very fresh" if you found it in Albertsons.
     
  4. Cacique500

    Cacique500 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You could always float test them...if they sink they're good. You can also crack them into a small dish and check them before prep...any funny smell or anything looks off, toss 'em.
     
  5. AlletahG

    AlletahG Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 21, 2014
    Thanks, I will try the float test. With the amount of snow we had, I am pretty sure the hen hasn't been going over to the neighbor's for more than a week and half or so. I've noticed one chicken recently wandering around over there and sometimes ending up in our front yard where I would "rescue" her and put her back with her friends so she wouldn't have to walk through the snow. So, I am fairly certain the eggs that weren't cracked aren't more than a week old. More than that and they would have definitely frozen solid and cracked.

    Today none of the girls left our yard (so far). I will keep them contained for a while, at least until they've finished laying each day.
     
  6. JJSS89

    JJSS89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She doesn't think it is a bad habit. She thinks it is a safer place to lay her eggs probably.

    They just do that sometimes. Give her a dark, quiet spot in your yard
     

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