Something is stealing my eggs!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kara_leigh, Sep 26, 2011.

  1. kara_leigh

    kara_leigh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 3, 2011
    Bradleyville, MO
    We have one Ameraucana that has been laying for a while, and we finally had one more pullet start laying a week ago. Now, yesterday something started stealing my eggs!

    My chickens free range all day, so I can't keep their coop shut up otherwise they can't get in to lay, and they lay at random times during the day. I had been keeping some faux eggs in the nesting box to encourage the chickens to lay in it. Yesterday I went out to get our two eggs we get each day, and there were no eggs and no faux eggs either! So, I replaced the faux eggs with 3 golf balls.

    Today my husband had been checking the box about every hour, and managed to snag the brown egg, but he had to go somewhere. I went out a bit ago to check for our green egg, and...EVERYTHING was gone again!! The golf balls were gone! I was SOOO mad! I looked around, and I found one of the golf balls a ways away from the coop under a bush, and then found another one near our front porch. Never did find the 3rd one. What is going on???

    The nesting box is a small wooden crate that is set on end so they have to sit down into it (my older pullet kept pulling the hay out of it when I had it on its side) and it is about 12" deep and wide, and about 18" long. Would it be physically possible for a cat to get eggs/balls out of something like that?? I have never seen any other kind of animal on our property during the day other than cats. I thought maybe a snake, but I don't think a snake would leave the golf balls behind like that, would they??

    Is there anything I can do? Help!!!
     
  2. extraordinaryfowl

    extraordinaryfowl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2011
    Lancaster, PA
    I have never had this problem, though if I had to venture a guess I would say rats - they are notorious for stealing eggs. It could be something else though - How high is your nestbox set? It is a good idea to have it at least a foot off the floor. MW
     
  3. klmclain1

    klmclain1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2011
    Oh my! That's bad, but at the same time it's too funny! I can't believe whatever it is is stealing the golf balls too! I'd think if it were a rat you'd see the little teeth marks in the golf ball you found? Maybe not. I've never heard of such a thing. Sounds like it's time for some covert operation! A camera if you can, or some sort of observation point where you can't be seen or detected...and just sit and wait!
     
  4. PtldChick

    PtldChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 15, 2011
    Portland, OR
    Try putting a rat trap under a milk crate (recommended to me) to see if you catch any rats in the act. The milk crate allows the rats in and keeps the chickens away from the trap. Something bigger might have gone after the chickens. Another possiblity is possums, who may go for eggs if available instead of the chickens.
     
  5. kara_leigh

    kara_leigh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 3, 2011
    Bradleyville, MO
    The golf balls were out of the coop again today, and again no eggs. [​IMG]

    but....we're pretty sure it is our dog that is the culprit. [​IMG] We noticed this morning that the slats on the ramp going into the coop were all loosened and out of whack, so we figured it had to be a biggish animal to make them do that. Our cat has gone up and down that ramp a million times without a problem, so we excluded her. We looked at the teeth marks on the golf balls, and thought maybe it was our dog, so I went and got an egg out of the fridge to see if she would take it and eat it. She immediately took it from me and went under her tree and started eating it. [​IMG]

    She got the scolding of her life. Looks like Miss Olive will not be left alone outside for a while.
     
  6. SIMPleChick

    SIMPleChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 10, 2011
    Utah
    We have 3 big plastic tubs for our nests and our BA who I just found broody today! LOL! She, from day one of her laying steels the eggs from all the other nests and puts them under her before she lays her egg.(This is including our wooden eggs! Every night I put 1 wooden egg in each nest, every day they are in 1 nest!) SHe tucks them under her wing and carries them down the line to her favorite nest. Could be a pest or could be a broody hen trying to hide the eggs in an outside nest??? Either way, good luck!!! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2011
    1 person likes this.
  7. Johnn

    Johnn Overrun With Chickens

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    Sep 5, 2011
    Myne use to be taken off the crow i used to get 11 eggs a day then i only got 1 and i use to walk to the hutch and crows would fly out with eggs in the claws and mouth i wasnt happy
     
  8. Gerry2011

    Gerry2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 8, 2011
    NW Arkansas
    Quote:I had a BO that used to steal eggs the same way from the other nests to put in hers. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  9. SIMPleChick

    SIMPleChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 10, 2011
    Utah
    Quote:I had a BO that used to steal eggs the same way from the other nests to put in hers. [​IMG] [​IMG]

    She is SUCH A STINKER! I just heard 2 other egg songs so I go out minutes after and she had already gone to the other nests and stolen the 2 eggs! Little BUTT! But she is so cute, beautiful, shiny black feathers, all puffy and adorable....she's gonna hate me if I decide to dunk her in cold water!!!
     
  10. klmclain1

    klmclain1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2011
    yes..sounds like it's the dog! Too funny! My husband says "at least the dog isn't eating the chickens!"
     

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