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Shell-less egg concern

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by krodgers, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. krodgers

    krodgers Chirping

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    IMG_1782.PNG I have a pen with 5 pullets. Two have started laying. This morning I went to the pen and found a shell-less egg. I'm concerned that one of my laying girls is going through something. My other thought is that I could have another pullet beginning to lay. Isn't a shell-less egg common with new layers? I've put the calcium crumbles in their pen for choice.
    If it's one of the pullets already laying, how long will it take to get back to normal? If it's a new layer? How long does it take them to get it all situated and start laying eggs with shells?
     
  2. Rickba

    Rickba Songster

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    It happens. Especially when they first start laying. There bodies have to adapt to laying eggs. Put them on egg layer feed and have grit and oyster shell available for them. It'll work it's self out. Don't be surprised if you have some of the weirdest shaped eggs you've ever saw.
     
    Tlmcq likes this.
  3. krodgers

    krodgers Chirping

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    I have them on the grower/finisher feed still because I read that it's not good to be on layer feed if they haven't started laying yet. Is that true?
     
  4. Rickba

    Rickba Songster

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    I would put them on layer, or at least have the oyster shell available so the hens that need it will eat it. Without the extra calcium, their eggs may not harden, or the calcium will be taken from the bones and other body parts which will make your hens ill.
     
    krodgers likes this.
  5. krodgers

    krodgers Chirping

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    Thanks. Their feed is almost gone so the next bag I will be sure to buy layer. I imagine I'll be buying it in the next day or so. In the meantime the oyster shells are out there as of now. Thanks for you r advice.
     
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging 9 Years

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    A lot of us never use Layer. We use Grower, Flock Raiser, or something else low in calcium and offer oyster shell or another calcium supplement on the side. That's a common way to handle the problem when some are laying and some are not. You can buy Layer, but with oyster shell available it should not be a case of "have to".

    A hen's internal egg making factory is pretty complicated, there are a lo to things that have to go together right for a perfect egg. To me it's kind of amazing how many get it right straight from the start. There is nothing unusual about a pullet getting something wrong when she first starts. That's not just the physical appearance or make-up of the egg, it includes where it is laid. Most pullets use a nest for their first egg but some just drop it wherever they happen to be. There are a lot of different things involved in getting the laying process right.

    That could easily be the first egg of a new layer. Maybe it did not stay in the shell gland long enough for a shell to be put on. Maybe the shell gland wasn't cranked up and working yet. Maybe something else.

    It could be a egg from a pullet already laying. A hen is supposed to release one yolk a day. Maybe she had an oops and started a second yolk. There may not have been shell material available for a second egg that day. That's why some pullets lay double yolked eggs when they are just starting, they accidentally release two yolks instead of one.

    Most pullets work these things out pretty quickly. It's really unusual for them to last more than two weeks, usually a lot less. You can certainly buy Layer, nothing wrong with that. I'd still offer oyster shell on the side, especially if you are feeding treats or they forage for any food. That way they have access to all the calcium they need. But I see no need for you to panic or get too worried, eggs like that or even weirder are pretty common when pullets start laying. If it goes longer than two weeks, well maybe get worried then.
     
    krodgers likes this.
  7. krodgers

    krodgers Chirping

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    Very good to know!!! Thank you so much!
     

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