Q&A

DEAR NEW FARM:

My chickens are laying again, but they are eating them, too. I am not sure if it is more than one chicken doing this. What can I do to prevent them from eating the eggs?

Gabrielle Roesch
Washington

 

DEAR GABRIELLE:

We asked our friend Brian Moyer, a local farmer and an active member of our region’s sustainable farming community, for his advice (since we don’t raise chickens and he does). Here’s what Brian had to say:

There could be many reasons why your chickens are eating their eggs:

  1. Too much light at the nesting boxes. Chickens prefer a dark place to lay, so if you can darken up the laying area, that could help.
  2. Too many hens per nest. Too much activity and an egg gets broken and, before you know it, they're eatin' eggs. Folks vary on how many hens per nest are acceptable (5-10), but you can be safe at five hens per nest.
  3. Make sure they have some free-choice oyster shell, and collect the eggs as often as possible so they get less interested in the eggs.

Hopefully, when spring comes, they will be more interested in grass and bugs then eating eggs.

Brian Moyer
Green Haven Farm (www.greenhavenfarm.com)
Pennsylvania

 

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