Soft-shelled eggs and molting... ???


12 Years
Apr 11, 2007
Phoenix, AZ
I have a 2.5 year old RIR that has never actually gone through a full molt. As you can imagine she looks pretty scraggly. I noticed a week or two ago that she is looking mighty bald on her head and her chest looks rough too, but I'm not seeing the piles of feathers laying around that I'm used to seeing when a chicken molts. Instead of slowing down the laying frequency or stopping altogether she's been laying paper thin shelled eggs for 2 weeks or so that usually get crushed in the nesting box. There's plenty of oyster shell, so my assumption is that she's molting and for whatever reason she can't figure out how to take a vacation from egg-laying and the eggs are just coming out with soft shells? Do you think this is accurate? Her egg today had a blood spot in it that was about 1/4" around.
I wish I had an answer as my Easter Egger is having the exact same problem. I think she has mites and have put down DE and sprayed Poultry Protector in the coop. The loss of feathers is from scratching and seems to be around her neck mostly. Do some searching for mites and you might come up with something. I think that the mites stresses them out and they end up with crummy eggs. My other hens eggs are practically bullet-proof.

I've been getting a few eggs that don't even have a proper shell around them. I've been putting out yogurt, which they gobble up like crazy and that seems to help a bit.

Let me know if anyone has any genius ideas.

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