stinky eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Skunkmiser, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Skunkmiser

    Skunkmiser Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 1, 2009
    Raymond, NH
    Is it possible for a chicken to lay a stinky egg? A neighbor told me her hens ocassionally lay eggs that seem like they are old and rotting smelling when cracked. She said her eggs at at the most 3 weeks old that she may have in fridge but are washed and put into fridge the same day as hatched. Her birds are about 3 years old. Does anyone know what is really going on?
  2. MissJenny

    MissJenny Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 11, 2009
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Eggs, which are porous, should not be washed -- she is actually putting bacteria into her eggs via the washing process.

  3. Trunkster

    Trunkster Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 13, 2010
    Washing the eggs may be the problem
  4. chickerdoodle

    chickerdoodle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 21, 2009
    If you wash the eggs with cool water as the bloom washes off bacteria and anything else small enough (ewwwww...) on the shell will be absorbed--including strong smells next to the egg as the odor is an airborne chemical. The egg has pores and if inside the egg is warmer than the outside the inside pulls in the cool water (and whatever else) in to equalize the temperature. You are always supposed to use slightly warmer water than the egg (if you wash them at all) so the egg won't pull bacteria or anything else in to equalize the temp but possibly push out.

    Feeding too much of a strong flavored food such as garlic, fish, onions or other foods can flavor and give off icky smells in the eggs too. Don't know if either is her problem but its a possibility. I am not privy to any aging problems with hens and the smell of their eggs off hand. [​IMG]
  5. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    If you must wash, it should be done with water that is warmer than the egg, to encourage bacteria to move out instead of in. If possible, washing should be done right before use.
  6. pawprint2104

    pawprint2104 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 21, 2010
    SF Bay Area

    Definitely, don't wash the eggs. They should appear clean and dry in the nesting box. If they're getting soiled, encourage her to ensure their nesting area is free of droppings and small enough that they don't use it for roosting (and pooing). If she must clean the egg, she should brush it with a dry cloth or soft brush and follow the above instructions about the warm water.

    Good luck.
  7. Tatubela

    Tatubela Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 23, 2014
    There are lots of threads on stinky eggs, but i'm still puzzled as to what to do. My almost 20 weeks Delaware started laying just a week ago. Her first eggs had very soft shells and we hesitated eating them but did any way. However, the 4th and 5th eggs she laid had an awful weird and strong smell when cracked. It is hard to describe, it is not like a rotten egg, it is a more like dirt smell, but very unpleasant. After reading different things online, I still don't know what to do. We haven't had this issue with the other chickens that are laying as well (Golden comets).
    Can the chicken be having some digesting issue with the food?
    Does she needs probiotics?
    Will the smell go away? We don't want to get rid of her. Luckily I can identify her eggs pretty easily.
    she doesn't appear to be sick. these chick are pretty spoiled.
    Any ideas?
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2014
  8. Tatubela

    Tatubela Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 23, 2014
    I thought I write an update, after 6 months of fresh eggs almost every day. After I switched the food from starter to pellets, the stinky fish smell went away. I talked to a very savvy farmer and we kind of deduced that this particular chicken was having some kind of reaction to the omega 3 fish oil in the feed. Maybe she couldn't digest it as well as the others, just like some humans have food sensitivities. So my first recommendation if you experience this is to pay attention to the food or ingredients in it. And wait and see if the chicken outgrows it as its GI system matures.
  9. 4hwannabe

    4hwannabe Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 18, 2014
    I am glad to read your post. We also have been experiencing the same thing with our eggs. I have a SIlver Laced Wyandotte, Rhode Island, and 3 ameraucanas. The 3 ameraucanas are producing these earthy almost moldy tasting eggs. They don't smell foul or anything like that and there is no visual abnormalities either. The one thing that has been changed is my sister game me unhulled barley that we started giving with their feed so maybe that is it in ours. I am hoping that with the barley out of the picture it will go back to normal. Anyone else who has experienced this please let us know so we can compare stories. Thanks again for your post!!

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