Soft Yoke... What are the missing in their diet?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by amazonabby, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. amazonabby

    amazonabby New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Dec 1, 2008
    NW Florida
    It started with 2 of my girls laying soft yokes about a month ago and now 5 out of 6 are laying eggs with soft yokes. The yoke breaks when you crack the egg...instantly... 2 months ago I could literally pick up the yoke by the sack and dangle it and it would not bust, they were that strong. My girls have fresh water they are fed laying pellets. I used to bring them fresh fruit and veggies but right now i can't afford it so they are just getting the pellets. I have oyster shells for them but their shells are not the problem. Do I have to feed them greens regurally to get the really strong yoke?

    My chickens live in their coop because I live in the city and I can't risk them getting into someones yard and than the city telling me I have to get rid of them. I am not legally allowed to have them but I don't have any direct neighbors so there is no one to complain about the noise.

    I also have 1 cat and 1 dog plus alot of strays in the neighborhood. I don't want to risk them getting attacked. I have a chicken tractor but my girls are not that social to me and they do not like being picked up and carried from the coop to the tractor. I could stand outside close to dark with them and let them graze for a little bit if needed because they should return to the coop at dark..right..

    Please help me. I have not been giving out the eggs to friends becauser i am ashamed of my eggs...
     
  2. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    7,738
    95
    321
    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    No egg shame!!!

    I would see about making a chute or tunnel of some kind to move them to the tractor- unless it's really far.

    Can you spend time in the coop on a stool to get them more accustomed to your company and handling? I hang out and read books with mine...
     
  3. lavandula girl

    lavandula girl Chillin' With My Peeps

    What about bring grass clippings to them in the coop with their feed? If we don't have kitchen scraps to feed them, I give them that as a treat. Not sure if it changes the consistency of the yolk, but it does make them a darker color. As to getting mine used to me... I bribe them shamelessly with BOSS. They'll sit in my lap for those!
     
  4. amazonabby

    amazonabby New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Dec 1, 2008
    NW Florida
    So lack of greens will make a yoke soft?? i have been searching online and it seems that no one else has ever posted about soft yokes anywhere....
     
  5. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    What type of layer pellets do you feed, and do they contain grit and oyster? It sounds like you're getting good shells so it's doubtful that you have a calcium problem. Yolks are influenced by sulfur-containing foods like fresh greens and finely shredded cabbage. Also how old are the hens and what kind are they? Another thing that will smooth out many problems is a Tbsp of apple cider vinegar in 1 gal of the drinking water. I know it helps all hens to regulate their hormones and to deposit calcium evenly. It encourages them to drink enough. It also inhibits the growth of algae which can be a source of many problems in your climate! Hope this helps...[​IMG]
     
  6. AHappychick

    AHappychick Wanna-be Farmer

    5,772
    17
    269
    Dec 16, 2008
    westchester
    I have chooks inside a garage coop I bought a flat (although you can start from seed) of wheat grass from the juice bar and have been trimming it as added greens, I keep the flat on the window sill and so far its been good. Maybe you could do that [​IMG] I also posted about something I am going to try which is growing grass indoors as well but have not done that yet, I made a post about it somewhere...
     
  7. amazonabby

    amazonabby New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Dec 1, 2008
    NW Florida
    6 Chickens 2RIR(2 years old) 2Americus(8 months old) and 2 little white ones with feathers on their feet(1 year old).
    I will begin to at least give them grass clippings every couple of days and see if that helps.
    "Yolks are influenced by sulfur-containing foods like fresh greens and finely shredded cabbage"
    I didn't know that! Thank you!
     
  8. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    25,559
    66
    411
    Sep 25, 2007
    Michigan
    I've not heard of an issue with soft yolks. This is a new one on me! Here's a website that addresses egg issues - both shell issues and white/yolk issues. Maybe this will help you:

    http://www.thepoultrysite.com/ourbooks/1/egg-quality-handbook/

    I just cannot imagine that they are not getting what they need, since you have them on a layer feed and are supplementing with oyster shell, and hopefully grit.

    I don't think greens are going to make the sac around the yolk stronger; they will make the yolk darker, however. Good luck, and don't be ashamed of your eggies!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by