Will this cause problems

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Jesusfreak101, Dec 20, 2015.

  1. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a leghorn who this morning i found with egg all over her (face&chest). I looked everywhere and finally looked in the front of the coop one the inside right behind the big door was what appeared to be yolk and white no shell. I am assuming that shell-less and soft (had a hen who laid two eggs that were pretty much just a light membran and hardly any shell) shelled eggs wont cause her to become a egg eater. I collected the other eggs from the coop and non of them were pecked or cracked so i am assuming she just goes for easy eggs. But will she adventually go for hard shelled eggs.
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Good question. As usual, I’ll say maybe instead of giving a definite answer.

    An egg eater is a chicken that has learned to open an egg to eat it. Many chickens will eat an egg that has already been opened. That’s not an egg eater, that’s just a chicken acting naturally. It’s when they learn to open an egg that you have a problem. I’m definite about that.

    Will eating a soft-shelled egg like that cause a hen to become an egg eater? Probably not but I’m not sure. I’d be more worried about an egg that accidentally broke that had a hard shell, say one laid from the roost and broke or a thin-shelled egg laid in a nest and broke when a hen stepped on it. Many people would be surprised at how much eggs get stepped on, both by hens that laid them as they are leaving the nest and other hens getting on or off the nest. Broody hens are really rough with their eggs. Eggs with a regular shell are tough enough that they hardly ever break from that treatment but a thin-shelled egg sometimes will. A no shell or really soft-shelled egg looks a lot different than one with a hard shell.

    You’ll read a lot on here about feeding egg shells back to the flock, on whether you should crush them or even cook them to keep them from causing egg eaters. A lot of us do nothing other than crack the egg and feed that uncooked uncrushed half egg shell back to them and don’t have egg eaters. Having a true egg eater is pretty rare. I wouldn’t over worry about that, but keeping it cleaned up as well as you can and gathering the other eggs a few times a day are both good ideas.

    How often is that hen laying a soft or shell-less egg? A pullet just starting to lay will sometimes do that as she gets the kinks out of her internal egg making factory. That should clear up in a week or two though. Occasionally a hen will just have a glitch in her egg factory and lay one, we all get the hick-ups occasionally. That’s no big deal. But if a more mature hen is doing that regularly you may have an issue with that hen.
     
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Most chickens will clean up cracked or shell less eggs and even floor eggs, it's a different behavior than egg eating. Mine will consume the shells as well as the egg.
     
  4. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I figured as much and honest i know last month i had a golden sex link who laid two soft eggs but she had just started now she lays hard shelled eggs. I have two/three new layers were it was tells me it was a new girl. I have
    A total of seven coming in to laying so outside of them i pretty sure its not my older girls as i got the eggs out of the normal boxes so not worried about them. I just wanted to make sure. I have probably alot more solf eggs coming so i figured i would ask. I seen her jump off her roosting spot to get to a egg a hen just laid in the yard that was soft it was the hens second egg of that day. I didnt get to it before she did. Thats kinda why i asked she the only one with the egg on her she also one of my oldest hens i know it wasnt hers i get three white eggs a day and only have three white layers she one of them. She also my dominate hen so before she taught the others i wanted to check and make sure i wasnt crazy.
     
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    The best way to prevent egg eating is to make sure they have enough protein in the diet otherwise they crave it and will seek out easy sources, many people switch their young hens off grower too soon, personally I think they need the higher protein until they are done growing. Chickens are like dogs in the fact that the first year they grow tall, the second year they fill out and thicken, so some breeds aren't done growing until 2 years, and they do seem to get a little bigger each year. I feed mine a grower until I switch to an all flock, mine free range and get scratch, the higher protein helps balance it all out, and of course oyster shells.
     
  6. emeraldgreen

    emeraldgreen Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm in the same situation, I have a few hens who lay shellless eggs and the others run from a mile away to gulp it up. It's been happening for a couple of months, I've tried to deter it but rarely make it there before them.
    Lately I have been noticing crushed eggs in the laying box, I'm yet to catch them in the act so I'm not sure if the eggs had a soft spot or whether someone's figured out how to crack them open. They never eat the brown eggs....
     
  7. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    If there's not enough bedding in the nest boxes the eggs will crack when layed. Adding fake eggs can help deter those searching for a peckable egg, sounds like you need some white ones.
     
  8. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    All mine are on an all flock rasier and i give them meat scraps every day and they free range so they should get good amount of protien. It is just that one hen that i have ever seen eat the eggs. They all go crazy for scrambled eggs in the am through lol. I cook them for my two year old and some days she wants a bit or two and other days she wont touch them so they go to the hens.
     
  9. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Sounds like a great diet and life.
     
  10. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Lol they are spoiled lol i have a few now that help me deweed the garden they help dig up roots and steal the bugs after i pull the roots our. I have a friend who laughs because if i whistle. Lol they pretty funny hens thats for sure, Lucy loves feeding them wild berries off the bushes we have.
     

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