Chicken House Mystery: What happened to this egg?greenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
Our son brought in a basket of eggs this evening, and one in his hand. He found it in the chicken house, with the small end neatly broken (or chewed) off, and the contents cleaned out. No, we don't have egg-sucking dogs (ours are penned, and they couldn't get in the house anyway). We do have a cat, but I have never heard of a cat doing such a thing, and we have had a LOT of cats and chickens. So, what happened to this egg? A friend of ours said that it sounded like a skunk. Have any of you heard of this? (She also said to shoot it from a LONG way off :o)!!!)
-- Leann Banta (email@example.com), February 13, 2000
Egg-eating cats aren't that neat - they just smash an opening, then lap up the contents.
-- Don Armstrong (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 13, 2000.
Sounds like a raccoon to me. That's exactly what they do.
-- Peg (email@example.com), February 13, 2000.
Ihave the same problem..but I was told the chickens sometimes tend to do this..I was also told to try cheyenne pepper in the areas I find the broken eggs. All the chicken did was to eat the cheyenne pepper.lol it was. my chicken house is an old greenhouse with a 20x10ft yard that is 6 feet high. i hope someone can help... no skunks around here.
-- Karlyn Edwards (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 13, 2000.
could be rats, was the egg in the middle of the floor or hidden in a corner?
-- stan (email@example.com), February 14, 2000.
Chickens will eat eggs the same way, although they usually eat shell and all. Your son probably got there before the chicken got back to the shell. If it is a chicken, there are two solutions. One, put the offender into the stew pot. Two, darken the nests some by hanging pieces of dark cloth over the nest holes to make a curtain. They are less likely to eat the eggs in the dark for some reason.
-- Green (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 14, 2000.
I agree, it was probably a chicken. Mine have done this from time to time and if the egg is there long enough, they will eat the shell too. Hard habit to break!!!!
-- barbara (email@example.com), February 14, 2000.
i am sure it was rats my garnma has alot of the same thing and it is rats we have seen them do this
-- jeff (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 14, 2000.
I believe you are dealing with a rat or skunk. Raccoon is much more interested in a chicken dinner than a snack of eggs. Most cats aren't experienced enough to crack the eggs, unless you have barn cats that you do not feed. Feed your barn cats, especially in the winter. Dogs will take the egg outside somewhere, and you will rarely find any evidence. Foxes couldn't be bothered - they are after chickens. Skunks are your friends. They will take an egg, but seldom. They are there after the mice and rats, and will sometimes grab an egg, or eat a little chicken feed. I have never had them attack a chicken, and they are calm enough that they have allowed me to release them from a leghold trap without spraying. DO NOT kill the skunk! Most likely a rat. Best bet is a plain old rat-trap where nothing else can get at it. Best bait - peanut butter. If that's inconvenient, use rat-chow (poison) in a container that won't let cats, skunks, dogs, or any other beneficial get to it. Another possibility is weasels, but I'd put that pretty far down the list. Good Luck!
-- Brad (email@example.com), February 14, 2000.
Rats are sounding like a strong possibility, but be careful: either rat traps or rat poison will mess up any poultry that get to them.
-- Don Armstrong (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 14, 2000.
Hi again! I agree a raccoon would just as soon have a tasty chicken dinner but I have seen one chase a duck off a nest in the grass and get the eggs. I was alerted by the distressed mother-to-be and went to see what was happening. She was making an awful racket but wouldn't go near her nest. I caught a large raccoon in the act of eating the last of a dozen eggs. He/she had neatly taken the end off each one and licked the contents out without breaking the rest of the shell. I can see how a skunk or a rat might do the same thing. So you have a few suspects to look for. Foxes, dogs, all those other critters aren't neat about their meals. Good luck.
-- Peg (email@example.com), February 14, 2000.
Putting several ping pong or golf balls in the nest box or on the chicken house floor discourages egg eating. I imagine they get quite a headache. I put them in off and on and it has broken any egg eating.
-- Anne (HealthyTouch101@aol.com), February 15, 2000.
Hey Leanne! Assuming you don't have weird neighbors on the loose, it's most likely the chickens. They are lacking in proper nutrition [minerals] and are eating the shell. We used to have that problem years ago and would increase their supply of oyster shells. Takes a little while for it to take ahold. As somebody already said, darken the nests. Hope this helps. Matt.24:44
-- hoot gibson (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 16, 2000.
Hi Leann, I wouldn't rule out skunks, years ago I had a pet skunk that would chase me up on a chair to get to an egg, fresh or cooked, they love them!
-- Jana Caldwell (email@example.com), February 18, 2000.