Topic of the Week - When eggs go wrong

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by sumi, Sep 17, 2017.

  1. sumi

    sumi Égalité

    Jun 28, 2011
    Tipperary, Ireland
    Pic by @wildpeas

    With approximately 2% of eggs laid by hens not quite making "egg box quality", chances are most of us at some point put our hands in a nest box and went "What the ?!?!?!!" Or worse, cracked an egg into the frying pan...

    This week I would like to see and hear about when your hens got egg laying very wrong. Be it multiple yolkers, soft shelled eggs, or unidentifiable offerings. What did you get, what is "normal" and when do you start worrying?

    For a complete list of our Topic of the Week threads, see here:

    For some of the most common egg problems and causes see this article on Common egg quality problems
  2. azygous

    azygous Crossing the Road

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Over ten years of plucking eggs out of nest boxes, I've been greeted with a wide range of surprises. Water balloon eggs (shelless), tiny one inch yolkless eggs, and all sorts of "designer" colors and patterns. But when I saw this egg, I didn't know what to think. It resembled a potato more than it did an egg.

    The hen that laid it was a young Welsummer. It was also huge, over two inches in length. P1010003.JPG
  3. Rickba

    Rickba Songster

    Apr 28, 2017
    You are always going to get eggs that just aren't right. In fact most aren't what you find in the grocery stores. I worked for about a year at a chicken/egg farm. They had over a million chickens. Perhaps half, if that many, made it to the cartons to be sold to consumers. The rest were rejected due to shape, blem's, cracks, color, size or many other reasons. These would go to a line where they would be cracked and the egg would go into 5 gl. bucket to be frozen. These frozen shelled eggs would go to the military and other bulk egg using industries that don't need whole in the shell eggs. So, if you are getting 50% or more good eggs, your doing quite well. Right now on my little homestead I get about 24 eggs a day. I always have 2 or 3 soft shelled, thin shelled, cracked shelled or no shell eggs a day. Perhaps half would be what I would call a "Perfect Egg", no blem's. I'm not picky, so I'm runnin' about 90% edible eggs. I eat about 2 to 3 dozen a month personally, the rest I donate to the local food bank. They're not too picky either.
    God Bless, Rick
  4. misskes

    misskes Songster

    Jun 15, 2017
    I haven't had anything too crazy, but my Silver Wyandotte and my Golden Wyandotte both have the habit of laying some speckled eggs from time to time.
    IMG_1027.JPG IMG_1026.JPG

    I've also had my fair share of double yolkers, mostly from my White Leghorn and my Easter Egger:
    19905254_10210275535030333_5720806158657533181_n.jpg 20638180_10210563826917450_202471319645238706_n.jpg

    And my Leghorn laid this whopper recently. I haven't cracked it open yet but I'm going to go ahead and place my money on another double yolker. Both eggs were laid by the same hen a day apart.
  5. Cluckcluck1215

    Cluckcluck1215 Free Ranging

    Jan 21, 2016
    Where the horses roam
    My Coop
    Normal is...Your normal egg.Clean, round tan eggs, dark brown large eggs, speckled tan, blue and green, and white.
    Irregular is double Yolkers, blue smears on the eggs(most likely from the blue or green egg being laid right next to it)
    And when I start worrying is.Large amounts of blood, lots of soft shells.
  6. FlyWheel

    FlyWheel Crowing

    Mar 19, 2016
    35.111165 -81.226586
    My Coop
    Anyone here ever get an egg with another complete egg (shell and all) inside it? I so wish I had taken a picture ( or even better a video) of the time I got one!
  7. Cluckcluck1215

    Cluckcluck1215 Free Ranging

    Jan 21, 2016
    Where the horses roam
    My Coop
  8. ChocolateMouse

    ChocolateMouse Crowing

    Jul 29, 2013
    Cleveland OH
    I got an egg once with a shell so thin that it was just powder over the membrane practically. It was from a leghorn and it was soft and pliable like a reptile egg.

    As a reminder, chickens that lay funny eggs can be more prone to egg binding and prolapse. This is especially true of chickens that lay double yolkers. I had someone who actually asked if she could get a chicken that laid double yolks regularly. Funny eggs tend to be caused by defects in the reproductive tract, so while interesting and normal, bear in mind that they're not a positive thing especially double yolks. That can lead to health problems, so monitor chickens that regularly lay strange eggs or who have recently layed a strange egg with a little more care. This is especially true of production egg laying breeds. Only select "perfect" and normal looking eggs of moderately large size for hatching. of Egg-Laying Hens for Productivity.pdf
  9. KateGoad

    KateGoad Chirping

    Aug 18, 2017
    IMG_0446.JPG I got a really chalky shell - but it was a first time (that we know of) layer - we think. We have two on-line for most days (Buff Orpington, middle two,and Partridge Rock, far right), one that just laid her first just shy of 6 months old (Colombian Wyandotte, far left), and a brand new shell-less egg this morning, which may be from either our Rhode Island Red (month younger than the other ladies) or Easter Egger (a week younger than the red).
  10. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    New layers give me the occasional rubber egg or soft shelled egg. Several nights ago, there was an intact egg yolk laying on the floor under the roost.

    My most memorable goofy egg layer was a home bred BSL (RIR x PBR) She had a difficult time regulating her conveyor belt. Any readers remember the Lucille Ball show where Lucy and Ethel got hired to work in a chocolate factory, wrapping those little chocolates as they came down the conveyor belt? The belt kept speeding up until poor Lucy was stuffing them in her pockets, in her bra, then she started eating them.

    Well, that was my little black hen, Hola! In one 24 hour period, I watched her lay 2 rubber eggs at 5 minute intervals, followed by a normal egg the following morning.

    The most common nest box glitch I find is when a hen plops a big ol' turd in the nest box along with an egg. Or the inevitable skid marks that accompany sloppy muddy days.

    After the pullets get up to full production, I average less than 2 eggs/week that do not make it into egg cartons. Any dirty eggs get set aside for my own use. Any soft shelled eggs go to my egg sucking, thieving dog. Egg shells get dried and go back to the flock.

    Any time I ever notice a decline in egg shell quality, I give the birds some multi vitamins. That has an almost instant beneficial effect on the structural quality of the entire egg. IMO, calcium and protein are but a very small part of egg quality and bird health.

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