What is eating my eggs???!!!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by pepperlady, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. pepperlady

    pepperlady In the Brooder

    Jun 24, 2011
    This morning when I went to turn my girlies loose for the day, one of them had already laid. [​IMG] So I picked up her egg and placed it in one of the nestboxes that is, for some unknown reason, taboo for my girls. I thought it might inspire one of them to lay there instead of in the hay bale, or on the ground. I just came from gathering eggs for today and SOMETHING had moved the egg from the nestbox onto the coop floor. It broke it into two equal halves and ate all of the insides of the egg!! [​IMG] I have suspected this happening once before, but this time I KNOW something did it intentionally as it did not move itself from the nestbox onto the coop floor. HELP! I have no idea what I am dealing with![​IMG]

    Any ideas??

  2. kuntrychick

    kuntrychick Songster

    Jul 19, 2009
    Any chance one of your girls moved it from the nest box & ate it? I've read that its very hard, if not impossible to break them of that if that happens.
  3. mamagardener

    mamagardener Songster

    are you sure it didn't break when you moved it? My girls don't eat eggs, unless they are broken. If they are broken they will all eat them.

    Even it they are still whole but cracked with some oozing out they will eat it.
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
  4. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Crowing

    Apr 11, 2011
    Sounds like mice, they did the exact same thing in my coop. Shells broken and licked clean.
  5. pepperlady

    pepperlady In the Brooder

    Jun 24, 2011
    I know the egg wasn't cracked when I put it in the nestbox.

    My girls have only been laying for about a month and I have had NO pecking or eating of eggs, yet.

    My top suspects are cats or rats, as it happened in broad daylight to eliminate noctournal predators. There are about 5 cats around here that think they liver here as of late. I know that they sleep in the barn right under where my hens are. I've let them stay hoping that they could keep rodents away, but now I'm not so sure. [​IMG]

    BUT, they cut the soybeans behind our barn this week too, so that might have run some mice/rats looking for cover in our barn....hmmmmm:idunno
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    It's really hard to say based on that. It could be a chicken, mouse, or rat. Even during daylight it could be a skunk, raccoon, or maybe even a possum, though possums are way down my list in daylight. I've seen plenty of skunks and raccoons out and about during daylight. It does not mean they have rabies, it just means they figure they have business being out and about during daylight hours.

    My top suspects would be chicken and rat, though it could be any of the others, especially since it sounds like the coop is not closed off securely during the daytime.

    That can be a hard one. I suggest maybe putting some rat and maybe mouse traps where the chickens can't get to them but the rodents can. Like maybe inside a box with a small opening. And put that opening against a wall since mice and rats like to run along a wall.
  7. Reyvaughn

    Reyvaughn Songster

    Mar 10, 2011
    Northeast Pennsylvania
    Rats or mice.

    I have rats eating and stealing my eggs right now and it's the same exact thing. Sometimes on the floor, sometimes in the nest box. Sometimes only a hole broke in the side and other times they are halved and cleaned out. I have two of my cats trapped in the hen shed right now on patrol. They better get one tonight.

  8. pepperlady

    pepperlady In the Brooder

    Jun 24, 2011
    Quote:My coop is unusual. I have cleared out a old room of a barn and but an enclosure mounted to a wall that is very secure for them to be closed up in at night. However, I do leave it open for them during the day to come & go as they please since their nest boxes are in the enclosure. We live on 100 acres, so my girls have free range during the day. They are currently enjoying the newly cut soybean field to scavenger around in [​IMG]

    I'll try to set up some mouse traps after I have closed my girls in for the night and move them before I let them out in the morning & see what I can catch. That way my hens would be safe, but maybe I can catch my egg theif.

    ALSO: We are far enough from woods that I don't think a coon would have ventured this far from cover during the middle of the day. Although, I know we have lots around here as we are bordered by a creek about 1/4 from the barn. There was no skunk smell at all, but there again, I know that skunks live around here too!!! UGH!!

    I hope I catch some mice tonight & end the madness of contemplating what it "might" be!!!

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