If you are a seasoned chicken owner you may know by now that no two eggs are the same. They range in size, color and shape, and at times you might even encounter what we like to call an ‘egg oddity’, which will often leave you scratching your head.
However, these seemingly strange occurrences can be explained, so continue reading below to solve the puzzle of your extraordinary egg.
Body-checked eggs are those that are wrinkled or assessed in appearance. This is due to them previously being damaged while in the shell gland pouch, often from stress or pressure put on them. They are then repaired before lay, which is what gives them their somewhat rippled appearance.
While this sort of egg may appear alarming, a shell-less egg is a seemingly common occurrence, especially in young layers, because their systems are still warming up to the laying process and their shell gland is still maturing. However, if shell-less eggs are occurring in your older hens, it might be a symptom of calcium deficiency (and overall poor nutrition), stress, infectious bronchitis, or EDS (egg drop syndrome). If it becomes a repeat issue, make sure that your cows are comfortable and eating a well-balanced, calcium rich diet. A quick visit to the vet to test for any further health issues will not hurt either!
Also known as”slab-sided”, these eggs appear to have a somewhat flattened side with wrinkled edging, and are more common in young layers. It gets its misshapen appearance from being kept too long in the shell gland, or in certain cases when a mis-timed egg proceeds down the oviduct and ends up resting alongside it.
Rough Shelled or Pimpled Eggs
Eggs that have differing textures can be due to a range of things. Little bead like growths on an egg (can be in a cluster or larger mole shapes), are known as calcified substance and may be a result of excess calcium intake, disease, or defective shell glands. If these kinds of eggs are only found infrequently, there’s absolutely not any cause for concern, however reducing calcium consumption over winter can help keep pimpled eggs at bay.
Uneven shell colouring are simply the result of uneven pigmentation while at the shell gland pouch-no cause for alarm!
Egg Within an Egg
Theres nothing more alarming than cracking an egg into your frypan and seeing there’s another whole egg inside of it! But consider yourself lucky if this happens to you, as it is a remarkably rare occurrence! Known as counter-peristalsis contraction, this bizarre event results from the early launch of a new yolk while a present egg remains in the formation stage and not yet been laid. This then causes a contraction where two eggs meet up in the reproductive tract and provided a layer of albumin, membranes and a shell surrounding them both prior to being laid! While this might seem disturbing to some, it doesn’t in any way mean your chicken is unhealthy.
Blood spots can appear on the surface of an egg yolk and is the direct result of a blood vessel breaking in the gut as the yolk has been discharged, or in the oviduct as the yolk travels through it. They occur more so in older hens that have a genetic predisposition, are deficient in Vitamin A, or can also be a completely random occurrence!
Also known as”rooster eggs” or”wind eggs”, super small and yolkless eggs are often produced by young layers using an immature or non-synchronized reproductive system. Or in an older hen, as the result of a piece of tissue in the reproductive tract breaking off and being treated as an egg. They have the exact look of an egg, complete with a shell, but without a yolk-what a joke!
Double Yolk Eggs
Our favourite sort of eggs-double yolkers occur when two separate egg yolks are discharged into our hen’s oviduct too close together, and so end up becoming encased in one shell. This can be due to a hormonal change or imbalance which releases the yolk too early. Double-yolked eggs are more commonly produced by new layers, or those nearing the end of their laying life, and is often a hereditary characteristic. These eggs are usually much physically larger than eggs to accommodate two yolks, and doubly yum!
These are simply a few of the well known ‘egg oddities’, if you’ve encountered any extraordinary eggs we’d like to hear from the comments!
If you’re worried about continual or replicate problems with your eggs, it is ideal to go to your local vet to check about your chickens’ health.
Despite the most attentive chicken keeping, one of your birds will get sick sooner or later. It’s essential to have the ability to recognise the signs of illness and act fast — chickens are good at hiding their symptoms, so by the time you notice, they are generally very sick indeed.
If you believe that your chicken is ill…
A veterinarian always gets the best possible way of helping your birds and will have the ability to diagnose any issues with far greater details than any online source.
This article is a useful guide, but merely just guide — your vet is your best solution!
Diagnosing chickens is a huge challenge: they hide their symptoms, and could not let you know what’s wrong even if they wanted to. Furthermore, lots of the external symptoms aren’t specific to any one illness.
–Not drinking or eating
-Weakness or lethargy
-Pale comb or wattles
-Diarrhea or abnormal droppings
-Fluffed up feathers
-Other unnatural behaviour
If any combination of the above describes your chicken, she might be sick, and you need to take her into the vet ASAP to get specific diagnosis and treatment.
Symptoms of respiratory disease
Respiratory illnesses manifest unique symptoms in contrast to most other ailments.
Again, it’s practically impossible to get a backyard keeper to recognize the specific illness in question. You have to take your chicken to the vet for diagnosis and treatment. This will often involve antibiotics that your vet may prescribe.
General treatment choices
If, for some reason, you can’t bring your chicken to the vet immediately, then there are a few simple things which you can do to improve her probability of recovery.
–Isolate her from the rest of the flock to avoid any possible spread of illness and decrease bullying from healthy chickens.
-Keep her in a well ventilated and dry location.
-Provide a lot of water and food. Give treats if she will not eat her normal food-eating anything is better than nothing.
-Give a teaspoon of yoghurt for a few additional probiotics. Do not overdo it as this may lead to diarrhoea.
At times, a little TLC might be a chicken wants, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry. After you’ve gone to the vet, it could be worth checking your coop setup — windy dust and loopholes are a common cause of illness, and repairing these issues will help keep your flock healthy.
Some disorders have particular symptoms (in addition to those described above) which can help with home identification.
Coryza: [respiratory] Extremely swollen eyes, and a very rancid odour.
Coccidiosis: Occasionally leads to bloody faeces.
Avian flu: [respiratory] Dark, reddish spots on legs and comb, and sudden death. This disease can infect people, so be extremely cautious if you suspect it. Report any cases to the community government immediately.
Impacted harvest: Swollen crop (a pouch in the front of the body), which is very tough to the touch.
Sour harvest: Swollen harvest, which can be mushy to the touch, and a rotten odor from the mouth.
Botulism: Tremors of increasing intensity, end in death.
Bumblefoot: Infected wound .
Egg binding: The bulge of a stuck egg at the exit to the port.
Frostbite: Pale, slightly blue comb or thighs.
Pasty butt/vent gleet: Droppings caked over the buttocks.
Mites or lice: Pale comb (from blood loss), and compact insects among feathers.
Worms: Proof of worms in droppings.
If your chicken is acting strangely, but does not appear to be showing signs of illness, they might just be broody.
Broiler chicken feed comes in many forms, such as mash, pellet and crumble. Mash typically results in certain waste because of disturbance of grains (coarse particles) from different ingredients and nutritional supplements that result in the flicking behaviour of chickens. This problem is solved in pellet feed that produces uniform proportions and enhanced digestion of nutrients in broiler chickens. Crumbles include an additional measure to pellet manufacturing by taking the pellets and crushing them in consistency that is courser than mash.
There are several advantages of feeding poultry with pellets rather than mash.
-Pelleting reduces waste of chicken feed, water soiling, and discerning eating behaviour in chickens
-Reduces bulkiness of feed by 15 — 18%
-Reduces Salmonella, E. coli, molds and much more, and destroys growth inhibitors, such as trypsin inhibitors and gossypol during processing
-The pelleting process solves mixing difficulties, incorrect particle sizes, and ingredient separation
-Ends in the saving of 15-20% of broiler chicken feed cost
-Produces a greater nutrient density, increases the availability of vitamin E and B12, also improves digestibility and ME value of certain ingredients, thereby increasing animal performance when creating superior feed efficiency
-Studies like those of Chewning et al. (2012) establish that pelleted feeds outperform comparable mash feeds in broiler hens .
The Function of Pellet Quality in Chicken Feed
Pelleting involves conditioning raw materials by adding heat and water in the form of steam. The conditioned feed ingredients are then compacted into a dense mass and formed to conform cut and pressed. The heat and moisture is removed through cooling so the ingredients can withstand reasonably rough handling without excess breakage. Pellets can subsequently be crumbled into smaller particles to enable the chickens to absorb the feed efficiently.
McKinney & Teeter (2004) reported that pelleting contributed 187 kcal/kg of diet because of broiler chickens resting more between foods. They also found that the energy value declined as pellet quality diminished. Components, particle size, temperature, moisture, length of conditioning, and pellet parameters are key variables influencing the physical quality of pellets. Pellets that are good show enhanced durability to withstand the different attritional drives on the pellet. This is especially true of these forces which are encountered during transportation of the feed into poultry farms. The procedure for crumbling imposes stress on the pellet and creates fines that reduce the physiological quality of the feed.
In a study , Lemme et al (2006), they discovered that good quality pellets led to the highest weight gain of broiler chickens when compared to chickens offered inferior quality pellets or rough mash. Furthermore, they found that chickens that ate mash required higher levels of lysine to achieve the same performance as pellet-fed hens .
How Can Pellet Binders Improve Chicken Feed Quality?
Pellet quality depends on feed processing equipment, conditions, and feed formulation. Pelletability of feed components , depending on the presence or absence of natural binders and addition of artificial binders in chicken feed, are key formula factors that affect pellet quality. Since natural binders are required in high inclusion levels to succeed and frequently have high variability, a good quality pellet binder allows feed producers the chance for increased formulation flexibility, cost reduction per unit binding capability, and constant quality.
What Makes a Great Pellet Binder?
The maximum quality of pellet binders increase the efficacy of poultry feed by shielding feed from extreme heat and moisture. While 15 to 18% of fines are generated in the crumbling process. This improves overall quality by boosting pellet durability and significantly cutting down the number of fines in chicken feed.
Additional Advantages of Pellet Binders:
-Improve the output of broiler poultry feed at pellet mill by 10 — 15 percent
-Reduce energy costs by roughly 3 percent
-Shield the physical quality of pellets throughout transportation
-Crumbles with minimum fines can only be achieved with high quality pellets. –Chicken feed performance improves considerably when fines in crumble feed are minimalized, as evidenced by Lemons & Moritz (2015) research. More disadvantages in crumbles requires reprocessing that increases costs and also reduces the nutrient value of ingredients. Broiler poultry feed trials with crumble feed comprising premium excellent pellet binders showed a feed conversion ratio improvement of 4.8% when compared to crumble feed with no pellet binder. Pellet binders save money, time, and resources and also can improve the quality of your stock by enhance the quality of the feed.