chicken eating her eggs : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I discovered today that my australorp is eating her eggs. I'm not sure if any of the others (I have 5 hens total) are also. I have been told 2 different things 1. You can't brake them you must kill them & 2. Feed them oyster shells to harden the shells. What are your suggestions? They are kind of pets to my children so we are trying to avoid killing them but can't keep them if they are no good to us either. Tnanks, Leslie

-- Leslie Davis (, February 24, 2002


I'd surely give them oyster shell. It does toughen their shells. I wouldn't kill a hen over her pecking her egg. Just go get the eggs a little earlier and keep the pecked eggs for family use. They're still fine.

I find that sometimes my hens will fight in the nests. This can sure cause breakage, but that's just how it goes in the coop. Keep plenty of straw in the nests.


-- Jody Courtney (, February 24, 2002.

Hello Leslie, I started reading this forum about a month ago and that was one of the topics that someone had asked about. The responses were adding the crushed oyster shell but I had the same problem and I had been giving my 10 girls shell every day. We were down to 0 useable eggs so I was desperate!!

The suggestion that caught my eye was giving the hens whole oats. I didn't have any but I did have the rolled oats from the grocery store so for the past two weeks now, I've been giving them a cup full every evening as a treat. There was a 2 egg day and the rest have been 3 egg days with one 4 egg day!! The days are getting longer so that may be a factor. I still give them a little crushed oyster shell but the shells on their eggs are tough again. I'd seen several times that the eggs they'd lay had no or almost no shell at all. It would be so thin, you could see through it. The hen would always eat it most every time. But now, the eggs are fine and it's back to "normal." Not one eating the eggs!!

These girls are over 2 now so I expect less. They sure deserve retirement but we don't want to do without the eggs! Best of Luck, Nita

-- Nita Holstine (, February 24, 2002.

I had the same problem a few months ago. I was also told to kill them, well I didn't. I made the nest box darker by making the entrance smaller. Problem solved. Haven't had one egg eaten since. good luck

-- Lesa in VA (, February 24, 2002.

Another idea is to purchase several ceramic eggs from the feed or craft store (might even try golf balls). put several of these fake eggs in the nests you know are popular. after a few pecks into a hard ceramic egg, the hen won't bother "testing" any more.

Darkening the nest box is a good idea, too.

-- Buk (, February 24, 2002.

Keep giving the oyster shell, they need some of that. Also, make sure they have straw or sand or something soft in the nest box. If an egg gets cracked, they will eat it.

-- Mona in OK (, February 24, 2002.

Check the "older messages" - archives - whatever - the above on nest eggs is good, but also many have said previously to give them high- protein food. Variety - as in oats - could help too; but if they're craving protein, then they'll get real interested in broken eggs, and then in breaking eggs. It's such a really difficult habit to break once established that it could be worth treating them to some cooked or even oven-dried mince (you call it sausage?) or even cheese or mashed (old) boiled eggs. If you've got excess milk, then "clabbered" milk (sour, solid bits, almost a wild yoghurt) is also good.

-- Don Armstrong (, February 25, 2002.

we had a hen doing this a few weeks ago. I don't remember where i came across the suggestion but - i poked small holes in either end of an egg, blew out the contents and filled at again with mustard. put it back in the nest and she busted it alright, but that was the last one she has busted! I'v heard that will also cure an egg stealing dog. Good luck!

-- Susan (, February 25, 2002.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ