Someone is eating my eggs, pecking them and eating raw egg

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by pippo, Sep 1, 2016.

  1. pippo

    pippo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The past 2 days we have got home from work and found 3 eggs over the 2 days, pecked and eaten or rements of a shell in the nest boxes.
    I think it was the weekend gone I thought one of the girls had laid a no shell egg but now I'm thinking it had been eaten!
    We have 9 girls that have been together about 12 months, various ages, different breeds, about 7 or 8 layers - 2 consistant, and 3 or 4 who like to go broody together.
    One of our regular layers, Rosie, well, her shells have become more brittle. I plan to add more grit to the diet in the morning.
    One of our rescue non-layers, Nugget, has been going to bed earlier than normal and slightly more lethargic but still a full crop and active enough I haven't worried when she is out. She sleeps in the coop that I found 2 eaten shells today. Everyone was in bed when we got home. We have 3 different coops for them to sleep and lay in.
    we have one rooster added a few months ago. He is a scared little silkie. Hubby doesn't think he is capable and I hope he isn't.
    These chooks are our babies, I am happy to separate for a time but I WILL NOT CULL OR SELL my chickens, I am hoping for suggestions on how to find out who and how to treat the culprit.
    Thanks in advance.
    Pip.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Your hens are old enough to molt this year. Egg eating is usually from boredom or a deficiency. I think you probably have a deficiency going on. What are you feeding them?

    They require a minimum of 16-18% protein intake daily. Feeding layer with extra treats will leave hens deficient in protein. I prefer an All Flock or a non medicated grower. You should also have a separate dish of oyster shells for extra calcium. It should be fed free choice, it's a separate thing from grit which should always be available too.

    I would switch to a higher protein ration. Add in some higher protein snacks like cottage cheese, scrambled eggs, meal worms, or canned fish. Put out oyster shells and add some ceramic eggs to your nestboxes to discourage successful pecking of eggs.

    If they are beginning to molt they require extra protein to do so. If they can't get it in their diet they often turn to the only things available which are eggs or each other.
     
  3. pippo

    pippo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks. The feed is 18% protein but we recently dropped the pellets from the mix as we thought they weren't eating it.
    Last winter I used to be good and make them scrambled eggs about once a week. I will get back to feeding a variety of treats and get to the farm shop this weekend and get some oyster shell and fake eggs.

    Thank you so much!
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Hopefully a few changes will straighten them out. Sometimes egg eating becomes a bad habit that is hard to break. Also make sure your nests are well bedded. If eggs crack in the nest they are often eaten to clean the nest up.
     
  5. FaerieChicken

    FaerieChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Blue Jays, they waste my eggs, peck them open then leave it and the wasps end up eating them!
     
  6. pippo

    pippo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Put grit out this morning and hid some treats around the yard for while we were at work.
    I got home well after everyone was in bed but hubby said he got 2 good eggs (neither were Rosie's) and no evidence of broken or eaten eggs. Hope he is right.
    Always put plenty of bedding out. The girls decide to rearrange our bed making skills most weeks.
    How do blue Jays get in best boxes? Cunning things! Is there something you could do to prevent them getting in and ruining your eggs?
     
  7. FaerieChicken

    FaerieChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh trust me, just when I thought I had the nesting areas covered to where they couldn't find their way in, low and behold, I watch the little varmints squeeze their way in, either through the chicken door, or through a top vent!
     
  8. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Overrun With Chickens

    If your girls have access to the ground, they should not need grit. Grit is to aid in digestion and will not help harden your shells. They will get little rocks from the ground.

    Fake eggs work great! The girls ALWAYS rearrange the bedding I provide.

    Where I got my goats, she had CD's hanging in the door of the chicken house because the crows or ravens (can't remember which) would go in and steal the eggs. She said the girls didn't mind but the thieves were thwarted.

    Hope you find out who the connoisseur is soon. From what I understand it is a hard habit to break.

    The all flock/flock raiser I feed is at 20% protein. The layer pellets they sell at wally are only 15%. [​IMG] I never used them, just sharing info. You might consider switching to an all flock type since your broodies probably don't need the calcium in layer. And if you get chicks (don't think you have a roo) too much calcium for them as well as anyone who is molting. Oyster shell on the side is always needed. I even put some around the edges of my lay box for the girls to pick at. Missing details, so sorry if I make unneeded suggestions, if you don't have it on the side it might help your brittle layer.

    Good luck!
     
  9. pippo

    pippo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So far we have not had another incident of broken or eaten eggs. Hopefully it was an isolated incident
     
  10. pippo

    pippo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jerks! [​IMG]
     

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