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Beantree

A big mystery?

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Few days ago something spooked our 6 new hens during the night and we had three soft-shelled eggs dropped off the perches; presumably a fox or foxes trying to get into the enclosure by the coop. Result was we only had three eggs laid during the day. OK, we know we need to get the electric fencing installed as soon as the ground is soft enough for the posts. Then no more dropped eggs until today when I found four dropped; all the yolks were intact and all the split membranes were with them, so no double yolkers. The big mystery is four eggs laid today in the nest boxes as well, so as we only have 6 hens how did that happen? Now on rare occasions we've had hens laying two eggs in a day before, being a normal egg followed a few hours later by a softie, so eight eggs from six hens is remotely possible I think, but not with the soft shelled egg laid first surely? We'll be closing their pop-hole at night now until the electric fence is completed, which hopefully will stop them being disturbed.

Any explanations will be gratefully received.

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I think you need a chickencam so we can all find out!  I would have to be professionally rescucitated if I had found more eggs than hens, I can't even member if I had the same numbers of eggs as hens in a single day.  Could it be that the softies were laid 'late' so to speak in a 24 hour period (ie sort of from the day before), then the normal eggs were laid in the same 24 hour period, which equates to 'today'?

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That's good thinking Daphne. The answer will be apparent today by how many eggs we get.

I came up with a really wacky theory overnight. The two softies WERE both double yokers which both split on impact with the floor and separated exactly in half, so one yolk and half the membrane on each side. The eggs were in close pairs, so about 6" apart and the floor is covered with feed bags, so is well cushioned. Chances of that happening must be millions to one.

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To finish this off, we had 6 eggs in the nest boxes yesterday and one was a double yolker; none dropped in the night. But two more softies on the coop floor this morning and one didn't break so definitely two single yolk eggs. Even with the pop-hole shut they are still getting spooked at night so this morning we went in search of an electric fence energiser unit. With the heavy rain due over the next few days the ground will be soft enough for the posts and everything should be finished by the end of next week and hopefully the fox(es) will move away.

The mystery remains unsolved.

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Well I hope you manage to make the set up fox proof, my bro told me yesterday that they had lost most of their flock overnight to a fox.  It turns out the house is like Fort Knox, and the avairy run is also OK, but the 'tunnel' connecting them just wasn't secure enough.  He said he reckons foxy visited a few times before getting in.  Its his first fox loss in about 5 years of keeping chicken, and has knocked him back a bit, even though he routinely deals with culling and runs other livestock.

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