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SOFT SHELL EGGS being Laid in my Roost

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Southpaw Power, Nov 28, 2016.

  1. Southpaw Power

    Southpaw Power Just Hatched

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    Sep 21, 2016
    Livermore, California
    Hi everyone, Need a little help here concerning some soft shell eggs I'm finding in the roosting area.

    My flock is new with 5 hens, 6 months old and I found my first egg on 11/12/16. All my hens have been good by only laying in the nesting boxes all with really hard egg shells. By 11/14 a second hen started laying with a total of 10 eggs laid the first week. On the second week on 11/21 a third hen joined in with a total of 15 eggs which includes 2 soft shell eggs I found in the roosting area on 11/23. Both were tint/cream color. Now on week 3 here, so far I have found 7 eggs in the nests (one that weights in at 2.6 oz-ouch) and 2 soft shell eggs in the roost this morning. Both are tint/cream color.

    When I picked out my girls, I choose them by what egg color they would lay to get that Easter basket look. I have a:
    White egg - Sicilian Buttercup
    Light Brown/Brown - Barred Plymouth Rock
    Light Brown/Brown - Delaware
    Chocolate - Welsummer
    Greenish/Blue - Ameraucana

    I know my Ameraucana, Plymouth Rock and Delaware have been laying, so can this be my Welsummer? It can't be Buttercup because of the color and size.
    The thing that really confuses me the most is I'm getting 2 at a time. The ones this morning are weighting in between 1.4-1.6 oz each, a good weight for a soft shell egg. Is it possible one hen could be laying a couple of soft shell eggs at the same time?

    Any and all help appreciated. Linda
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC!

    Soft shell eggs are not unusual in the first month or so of laying and they are often laid 'not in the nest'.
    I think this is because they feel more like a poop than an egg, so get dropped wherever.

    It is possible to get 2 eggs from a newly laying bird in one day, especially if one is soft.

    Color of soft shells is not usually accurate because there basically is no 'shell' and probably no coating.

    2.6oz egg is probably a double yolker, also common with new layers.

    You can check vents and pelvic points to see who is laying ans who is not.
    Vent Appearance:
    Dry, tight, and smaller - usually not laying.
    Moist, wide, and larger - usually laying.

    Pelvic Points 2 bony points(pelvic bones) on either side of vent:
    Less than 2 fingertip widths apart usually means not laying.
    More than 2 fingertip widths apart usually means laying.
     
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  3. Southpaw Power

    Southpaw Power Just Hatched

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    Sep 21, 2016
    Livermore, California
    Thank you very much for your reply. It really makes me feel better.

    I've done the pelvic bone thing and for three of them I can get two fingers in, one I can get three, but my sweet little Buttercup I can only almost get two fingers in and her vent is wet but small. She is also six months old. As you probably figured out she is a Sicilian Buttercup.

    I met a lady who has Sicilian Buttercups, told me they usually start laying at 4-5 months and almost lay an egg everyday. She suggested there must be a problem and maybe egg bound. My understanding is Buttercup should average 2-3 small eggs a week and around six months is normal with the possibility she won't start laying until spring due to the time of year.

    Please tell me what you think.
     
  4. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    Look at your Delaware.

    Mine (breeder quality) would lay the cream/tint colored eggs and large from the beginning. One in particular would consistently lay soft shelled eggs the first month or so, and then periodically thereafter.

    It should settle down as the hen matures.

    Make sure you've got them on good layer feed with additional calcite grit or oyster shell. My Delawares were such prolific layers that they often needed some extra calcium.

    Nice birds.

    LofMc
     
  5. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    NW Oregon
    ...and [​IMG]
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Well, size of birds, and fingers, can vary.....so it's not an exact thing...over time you will get the hang of it.
    All individual birds are different as to how soon they mature to POL. I would not listen to that lady.
    Time will tell, it's hard to wait and gain experience about what to worry about and what not to worry about.
    Just keep watching.
     
  7. Southpaw Power

    Southpaw Power Just Hatched

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    Sep 21, 2016
    Livermore, California
    Now that I know my Daisy Delaware is laying, I'm sure the soft eggs came from her too. Makes sense since both those days I didn't have an extra egg in the nests and the one brown egg that was there, was defiantly from Roxanne Rock. I've made a chart to keep track of how many eggs are being laid as well as trying to keep track of which of my gals are doing the laying. If I can't tell which one laid it, I have a column called, "Who's your Mama". I have found that Daisy's eggs are a little more on the lighter side of brown than Roxanne's. Thanks for all your help.
     

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