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We have an egg eater - what do we do?

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The subject pretty much sums it up really.


3 of our 6 girls are laying after we returned our cockerel. The girls have clearly settled now after the summer however we seem to have an egg eater.


I am pretty certain it is not a bird or other animal as they would have to get in to the nesting box. It must be one of the hens.


I have noticed recently that they are not interested in eating the layers pellets. They do eat them but dont rush off to them first thing in the morning like they used to. They look around for other food first.


What causes egg eating and what can we do?

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The best thing to do is to remove eggs as soon as they are laid - not always practical, and nigh-on impossible if you are out at work during the day.


Second option is to try the mustard-filled or chilli-filled egg, or a rubber or china egg that they won't be able to peck into. It's debatable how effective these are.


There is a theory that hens eat eggs because they are lacking in protein, and you could try adding more protein to their diet - in my experience, once they have got a taste for it they go on eating them however.


The other option is a rollaway nest box (where the eggs roll out of reach as soon as they are laid), these are available but of course they don't fit in the Eglu. You could block off the nesting area and have one of these elsewhere, but it's not guaranteed they will lay in it!


I'm afraid I just resigned myself to it - they were mainly eating soft eggs and since the softie-layer has stopped laying altogether I only get the occasional eaten one.

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I have three P.O.L. chickens and the second started laying five days ago. Unfortunately she has decided to lay in the run and not in the house where the other chicken lays hers and I have had to rescue them from being pecked and stamped on. Yesterday I was out all day and when I came home I discovered the remains of the shell in the run and it is clear that the chickens had broken and eaten the egg. I am hoping that it is a one off, but I am concerned that if I don't do something that they will get a taste for egg.


Other info to add is that the shell of the eggs that I managed rescue were solid, and not at all soft. I supply the chickens with grit and oyster shell and the chicken laying the egg outside is not the lowest ranking chicken, but is the biggest of the three.


I think that if I can get her to lay in the house that this might help. The other chicken has been laying there for a month and they haven't seemed interested in her eggs at all. I am thinking of trying the plastic fake eggs and putting them in the house. The mustard egg also seems like an idea if they continue to eat the eggs. Does anyone have any other ideas or experience that might help?

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Hopefully it will turn out to be a one off accidental breakage and I will be able to nip any habitual egg eating in the bud. I will see what I have left when I get home tonight. I think you are right about her being taken by surprise.


Another forum suggested putting golf balls instead of buying the artificial eggs so I might borrow a couple from the other half tonight.

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