May 20, 2013

8 Tips for CLEAN EGGS from Backyard Chickens

Keeping backyard chickens should mean that their eggs are fresher, more nutritious and safer to eat than commercially produced eggs, but that will not be the case if eggs are allowed to be contaminated before they even reach the kitchen. Keeping eggs clean in the nest box is a critical step in egg safety and it's not difficult to achieve.
Keeping backyard chickens should mean that their eggs are fresher, more nutritious and safer to eat than commercially produced eggs, but that will not be the case if eggs are allowed to be contaminated before they even reach the kitchen. Keeping eggs clean in the nest box is a critical step in egg safety and it's not difficult to achieve.  Accidents do happen and occasionally an egg will become soiled with droppings or dirt carried into the nest box by a wet hen, but 99% of eggs from backyard chickens should be clean when collected. Here are some simple steps to ensure clean eggs.
Accidents do happen and occasionally an egg will become soiled with droppings or dirt carried into the nest box by a wet hen, but 99% of eggs from backyard chickens should be clean when collected. Here are some simple steps to ensure clean eggs.
1. Adequate Padding in the Nest Boxes
Eggs that have a soft spot to land will be less likely to break than those that drop onto the bottom of a hard nest box. This is also a good way to prevent hens from becoming egg-eaters. I use Nest box pads  and bottoms/liners with Koop Clean bedding on top of them. The Koop Clean isn't necessary with the pads and liners, but I think the hens enjoy rearranging it and it seems more welcoming than plastic alone. I don't use regular straw because the hens scratch it out of the nest boxes, leaving them unprotected.
Eggs that have a soft spot to land will be less likely to break than those that drop onto the bottom of a hard nest box. This is also a good way to prevent hens from becoming egg-eaters. I use Nest box pads  and bottoms/liners with Koop Clean bedding on top of them. The Koop Clean  isn't necessary with the pads and liners, but I think the hens enjoy rearranging it and it seems more cozy than plastic. I don't use straw anymore because the hens scratch it out of the nest boxes.
Kuhl nest pads and liners.
Kuhl nest pads and liners.
Spruce the Coop Herbal Fusion mixed into the nesting material makes for a welcoming nest!
Spruce the Coop Herbal Fusion mixed into the nesting material makes for a welcoming nest!
2. Sand as Litter/Bedding in the Coop and Run
Sand dries up droppings quickly and keeps chickens' feet cleaner than any other litter type. Chickens that walk into a nest box with clean feet do not soil the nest or eggs with mud or droppings that they walked through enroute to the nest box.
Sand dries up droppings quickly and keeps chickens' feet cleaner than any other litter type. Chickens that walk into a nest box with clean feet do not soil the nest or eggs with mud or droppings that they walked through enroute to the nest box.
3. Train Chicks Not to Sleep in Nest Boxes
Good habits are easier to instill than bad habits are to break. Chickens should be discouraged from sleeping in nest boxes from the day they move into the coop because chickens that sleep in nest boxes poop in nest boxes. When eggs are laid on top of fecal matter, they become contaminated. Information about training chickens not to sleep in nest boxes, here.
Barricading the nest boxes with egg cartons discourages sleeping in them.
Barricading the nest boxes with egg cartons discourages sleeping in them.
4. Provide One Nest Box for Every Four Hens
Sometimes when there are not enough nest boxes, hens will lay their eggs outside the coop where sanitation cannot be controlled. Providing enough nest boxes is one step towards ensuring that hens do not wander away to lay their eggs.
Provide one nest box for every four hens to help encourage chickens not to lay eggs around the yard.
5. Check Nest Boxes Early and Often
Occasionally a hen will soil the nest regardless of efforts made to prevent it. Checking nest box sanitation as early as possible in the day provides the opportunity to clean them before eggs are laid. Frequent egg collection allows for periodic sanitation checks throughout the day.
Occasionally a hen will soil the nest regardless of efforts made to prevent it. Checking nest box sanitation as early as possible in the day provides the opportunity to clean them before eggs are laid. Frequent egg collection allows for periodic sanitation checks throughout the day.
6. Collect Eggs Frequently
Collect eggs frequently throughout the day if possible. The less time eggs spend in the nest boxes, the less likely they are to be broken, eaten or soiled accidentally. Roll-out nests are great for chicken-keepers that are not at home the majority of the day. 
Collect eggs frequently throughout the day if possible. The less time eggs spend in the nest boxes, the less likely they are to be broken, eaten or soiled accidentally. Roll-out nests will work for chicken-keepers that are not at home the majority of the day.
7. Do Not Allow Broody Hens to Raise Chicks In Nest Boxes
Chicks hatched and raised by a mother hen inside a nest box will poop in the nest box overnight. When she takes the chicks out for breakfast in the morning, other hens will use the dirty nest box to lay their eggs. Move broody hens to a different location either before or after the eggs hatch.
Chicks hatched and raised by a mother hen inside a nest box will poop in the nest box overnight. When she takes the chicks out for breakfast in the morning, other hens will use the dirty nest box to lay their eggs. Move broody hens to a different location either before or after the eggs hatch.
8. Clean Feathers that Have Become Soiled with Droppings
For a number of reasons, droppings may soil vent feathers. Hens with soiled feathers near the vent should be bathed in lukewarm water to keep eggs from coming in contact with fecal matter. If chickens have chronically dirty vent feathers, diarrhea is often the culprit- try adding probiotics to their water and have droppings tested for internal parasites
Clean Feathers that Have Become Soiled with Droppings For a number of reasons, droppings may soil vent feathers. Hens with soiled feathers near the vent should be bathed in lukewarm water to keep eggs from coming in contact with fecal matter. If chickens have chronically dirty vent feathers, diarrhea is often the culprit- try adding probiotics to their water and have droppings tested for internal parasites.
Keeping backyard chickens should mean that their eggs are fresher, more nutritious and safer to eat than commercially produced eggs, but that will not be the case if eggs are allowed to be contaminated before they even reach the kitchen.
 The Chicken Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
Kathy Shea Mormino, The Chicken Chick®

107 comments :

  1. Staci Wightman5/20/13, 10:08 AM

    Any tips on how to bath a chicken?

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  2. mjskit @mjskitchen.com5/20/13, 10:48 AM

    Hey Kathy! Interesting information.I wish I had room to raise chicken, but I think my neighbors and cats would go nuts. :) I have a question for you. I get my eggs from my SIL's friend who raises free-range chicken and all. The eggs are very clean when I get them, but every once in a great while, when I crack open an egg the white is very cloudy and milky. When that happens, I toss the egg because I don't trust it. Are you familiar with this? Is the egg safe? Thanks for your reply!

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  3. Mrs. Tucker (Patti)5/20/13, 11:35 AM

    I never knew that raising chickens could be so labor intensive. But, I still want them...

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  4. Angela Betlewicz5/20/13, 11:40 AM

    I love those eye colors. Its amazing how beautiful they come out! Angela at HickoryTrail

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  5. Thanks a million. I was just complaining that I thought chickens were supposed to know to keep their nests clean...guess not.

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  6. nature gurl5/20/13, 8:12 PM

    Great information! We usually have to clean the eggs we get from our local farmer.

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  7. Great post, Kathy! These are some great tips, I'm going to start implementing them tomorrow. We get dirty eggs when it's rainy and wet in the run, and we're due for a rainy week, so this is the perfect time!

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  8. TheChickenChick5/20/13, 9:15 PM

    Thanks Meredith. I hope they help!

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  9. TheChickenChick5/20/13, 9:20 PM

    It's like any other hobby, Patti, what may look like work to one person is a joy to another. :)

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  10. TheChickenChick5/20/13, 9:29 PM

    I hate to break it to you, MJ, but you were tossing out the freshest eggs in the carton. Fresh eggs contain carbon dioxide, which make the egg whites look cloudy; as the egg ages the carbon dioxide escapes and the albumen (white) turns clear. Here's a handy trick for determining the age of an egg: http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2013/04/egg-float-test-indicates-approximate.html

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  11. TheChickenChick5/20/13, 9:36 PM

    There's no magic to it, Staci- if you've ever given a baby a bath, it's the same concept: don't let their faces go under water, use warm, not hot or cold water and only a gentle soap if necessary, which it usually is not. Chickens do not ordinarily need a bath unless they are going to be shown or are especially dirty due to another flock member pooping on them. They take care of their own hygiene by dust bathing. http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2013/01/chicken-dust-baths-ultimate-spa.html

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  12. Hi there....Your site is fantastic...I had been in search of some kind of liners for my nest boxes as I seem to have several broken eggs daily...I have plenty of nest boxes for the number of chickens that I have, but they all want to use the same nest box. This ends up with broken eggs....The shells are weaker than they should be even tho I am setting out oyster shell freely and also add it to their feed...

    Long story short...I found your link and would like to potentially purchase some of these liners, but I am finding that the website isnt very informative...is it just one liner for the price listed? Also, it doesnt list any measurements....did they just happen to fit your boxes correctly or did you have to cut them down perhaps....

    Would love your insight.

    Thanks!
    Marcee

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  13. TheChickenChick5/23/13, 4:18 PM

    Hi Marcee- there are lots of places to buy the nest box pads and liners; questions about a particular website should be directed to the merchant as I don't have the answers. I provided the link to show what the product looks like.

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  14. Thank you so much for hosting! Hope you are going to have a great Memorial Day :)

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  15. I was especially interested in the Farm 360 and the "Spruce the Coop Herbal" recipe. I'm hoping to find the Farm 360 locally. Thanks for the great ideas.

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  16. Those henbags are so stinkin' cute!!!!! (hatched two OE babies last night and today!)

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  17. TheChickenChick5/30/13, 12:42 AM

    Thanks for joining me, Karen!!

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  18. TheChickenChick5/30/13, 12:53 AM

    Congratulations on your new babies, Becky!!

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  19. Some great info here! So excited to learn even more about being a Chicken Mommy!

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  20. I've gone and bought most of my herbs for the herbal fusion mix for the coop. I hope they grow fast this summer so I can use them by this winter. It'll be nice to walk in there and smell something nice and fresh!

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  21. TheChickenChick6/7/13, 10:17 PM

    It'll be worth the wait, Becky, trust me. :)

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  22. Deborah Paterson9/15/13, 8:06 PM

    Thanks for the great tips. I've practiced most of these and my eggs are pretty green and clean.

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  23. Nicole Weiss9/15/13, 11:43 PM

    How does one wash a chicken? Seems like a little bit of work.

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  24. Denise Allison Magil9/16/13, 12:38 AM

    awesome

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  25. Linda A Leonard9/16/13, 9:57 AM

    Would you put liners in if you we're using a plastic nest box with the straw and where do you put the sand and would you use like play sand for kids thanks

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  26. Chicklover22469/16/13, 10:59 AM

    Any suggestions on how to clean one of my white Silkies' feathers on the side of her head? And how to keep it clean? How wet can I get chicken's feathers without hurting them? Bernadette keeps getting poop on the right side of her head above her eye. There is not that much but it mats her feathers, let alone how bad it looks. When I got her, it looked like someone had bumped her right side into a heat lamp because she had singed feathers on her shoulder and across her eye. I had to wipe her eye (sometimes 3 or 4 times a day) to keep it clean since dust and dirt would build up until she lost the (burnt) fluff and grew feathers. It's almost like she likes something caked up on her head on that side. Thank you!

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  27. TheChickenChick9/18/13, 9:34 PM

    I don't use sand in my nest boxes. I use liners and straw.

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  28. I use nestbox pads made from remnants of indoor/outdoor carpet. The can be removed, shaken, washed, then thrown out and replaced as needed.

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  29. Thank you for all your info. We just got out first coop and will be getting chickens in the spring. Your very helpful.

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  30. TheChickenChick9/30/13, 10:36 PM

    Very exciting, Pam!

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  31. If eggs do become dirty by accident, what is your cleaning method, for safe consumption?

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  32. Yes I would like to know some info on this my chick have a smaller coop on the eggs become dirty sometimes are we suppose to throw them out

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  33. Is discoloring of the eggs normal for hens that are 8 months old? And should I clean all my eggs.

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  34. the1honeycomb11/17/13, 6:42 PM

    love it! my hens are finally getting to where all my eggs are clean! great info though

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  35. Tony Moseley11/18/13, 12:16 PM

    GREAT blog/information! Thanks for sharing. I recently figured out that some of my hens were sleeping in the nesting boxes at night, which in turn, makes for dirty boxes too. I had to add some hinges and a board to OPEN/CLOSE the nesting boxes for laying ONLY, meaning they vacate the premises/nesting boxes at night. Eggs are MUCH cleaner now. I've thought about using the pads you mentioned in this blog. Would LOVE to win some to try first! 18 nesting box pads would run a bit expensive. Thanks again! Keep up the great work!!

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  36. You always make me wish that I had chickens, when I read your posts.

    Heidi’s
    Wanderings

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  37. TheChickenChick11/18/13, 8:20 PM

    Great idea, Tony!

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  38. TheChickenChick11/18/13, 8:22 PM

    I wish chickens for you some day, Heidi. :)

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  39. Do you recommend removing an egg as soon as the hen leaves the nesting box? I usually leave 1 or 2 in there to encourage the other hens to go and lay in there, not sure if I should remove them or wait till the end of the day? I have 8 hens & 3 nesting box's. They're not all laying at this time. They slowed down to 1 to sometimes 2 each day. They are almost done molting, I think that caused the very low egg production but I'm still learning as I go.

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  40. TheChickenChick12/1/13, 7:15 PM

    I recommend removing eggs from the nests as soon as possible.

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  41. I take my eggs out as soon as they lay them I went and bought some fake eggs at the craft store they seem to do the job same color and size. I don't wash them when I take Them out I wait till am.about to use them .

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  42. I have been raising chickens for over twenty years. From my research, I have learned that the chicken puts a bloom on the egg to protect it from fecal bacteria. This bloom allows the egg to remain at room temperature for quite some time. We can safely eat an unwashed, clean looking egg. When fecal matter is on the egg it needs to be washed in the following manner. Have water running that is warmer than the egg is. Rinse the fecal matter off of the egg under this running water, scrapping of any stubborn residue with your fingernail. Then dunk the eggs in a mild warm bleach/water solution..This solution kills any germs that remain from the fecal matter being on the egg. Then finally re-rinse the egg in fresh running water. The washed eggs must be kept in the refrigerator to prevent spoilage.

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  43. luvbngramma!3/10/14, 11:07 PM

    Do you recommend washing the eggs once they are gathered? I enjoy your page, posts and pictures! You have great information available with the click of a mouse! Thank you!

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  44. Any advice on how to clean a egg that does get dirty. Do you wash? Not Wash?

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  45. TheChickenChick3/13/14, 9:30 AM

    Thanks! I do not.

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  46. I don`t understand I though the hens was to sleep in there nest box at night so we have being going nuts trying to get our babys to go in the hen house at night and your saying not to???

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  47. Vicki Sewell Larson3/25/14, 11:39 AM

    I put a small dishtub (like the kind you get at the hospital) and fill it with water as hot as I can handle and antibacterial dish soap. I place it in my sink along with a soft towel. I put my basket of eggs on my left and I have one of those soft dish drying pads on the right hand counter. I dunk the dirty egg, wash it, lay it on the towel. When the towel gets crowded I rinse and move to the drainer. Then as they dry, I box them and store in the fridge. I've been doing this for a couple of years now and have had no problems what so ever.

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  48. Kathy Janes4/2/14, 12:43 PM

    I just used your link an ordered my nest box pads. I let them know you sent me. :0)

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  49. TheChickenChick4/4/14, 1:31 AM

    Thanks Kathy. They're good people at Fleming Outdoors. ☺

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  50. Which of the 2 nesting box pads do you like best?

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  51. Bonnie Breedlove Hawkins4/17/14, 9:55 PM

    Thanks again. I never heard of nest box pads or liners. I use 1-2" of sand with shavings over it. I was using straw but they kick it out. I've been raking it under the roosts. I bought linoleum today and I'm making poop boards. Next I'll get liners and pads. Fleming is currently out of stock on pads.

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  52. We put up a pole rail lean-to type thing against the wall next to the nesting boxes...the hens prefer to sleep there I think because they are higher up in the air & feel safer.

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  53. EDG-Elmendorf TX5/10/14, 3:10 PM

    Well after all this is said and done you did not address how to clean a dirty egg. Even with all these preventative measures, some eggs will get dirty. I will continue with my 5% warm chlorine solution, as this seem to work best. You say to provide 1 nest box for every 3-4 hens, this is a great idea, however I have 32 laying hens and collect eggs fro 3 - 4 nest boxes every day, the same nest boxes every day, the other 8 go unused. I have found up to 3 hens in the same box at the same time on many occasions, smaller boxes only resulted in more broken eggs and not more boxes being used. If anyone knows how to deter hens from laying several to a box I'm interested. Thanks

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  54. Where can I order egg cartons from I Love the colored ones

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  55. Im also trying to find pictures of how you would set up your table at an State Fair Egg Show ?

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  56. SouthernChick6/23/14, 12:15 PM

    I am still marvelling over you, Wonder Woman!! Great article! :-)

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  57. Nicole Lynn Altieri6/23/14, 12:19 PM

    I can't even get our girls to go up the ladder into the coop yet. I'm surprised their curiosity hasn't encouraged them to venture up there. Any suggestions for how to get them to want to go up there or will they start hunting for a place to nest when it is time (they are still babes)? It is SC and hot so I don't want to close them up in the coop during the day.

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  58. Laura Hoover Jensen6/23/14, 1:03 PM

    I can't imagine NOT cleaning the eggs once you gather them! I wash in a half full sink of warm water with a drop of soap (literally), and a little bleach. I am guaranteed they are clean, this way.

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  59. Sonia Rodriguez6/23/14, 1:06 PM

    Very insightful

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  60. I will order nest box liners! Thank you.

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  61. Pedinursemimi6/23/14, 2:05 PM

    Great help...gonna get some probiotics today for my girls.... thank you

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  62. Ada Anderson6/23/14, 2:29 PM

    This is totally off topic but need information/advice please. I have a silkie roo that seems to be getting more aggressive by the day. I have 6 hens and him. I use to be fine with him and now more than not he runs at me and jumps at me. I have tried standing my ground to be " the dominant rooster" but he lately just keeps coming. Someone told my husband that silkies do not grow spurs like other Roos but I can't tell as I am unable to touch him like the rest of my flock. I even tried to bribe him with special treats but it didn't work. It is to the point now where no one will go in the yard during the day, not even my 80 pound lab that mothers the baby chicks and my other girls love. Any advice on what to do or is it even possible to get him nice again without someone getting hurt??? Thank you.

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  63. When I get soiled eggs, I put them in a pan of cold water and rub them clean. I empty that water, put in fresh and put in about 1 T vinegar, gently stirring and making sure all the eggs get a good, but short dose of the vinegar water. I then run clean cold water in the pan, gently stirring. A short time is needed in the vinegar water because it will soften the shells. 30 to 45 seconds is plenty.

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  64. Thanks for the great information. I just had my first egg!!

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  65. This is why we have a nation of people who are allergic to more stuff and susceptible to more infectious disease than the rest of the world combined. Everyone is so focused on preventing contact with 'dirt' that their bodies never have the opportunity to develop resistance or immunity. For crying out loud, even the eggs we bought from the market had bits of 'fecal matter' on them when I was a kid growing upin England, and I don't recall any of my friends going down with chicken-shititis :)

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  66. You'll have to wait until the weather is cooler, but this will help then: http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/07/coop-training-chickens.html

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  67. Let me know what you think after using them for a while.

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  68. Cheryl Ortiz6/24/14, 7:06 PM

    good info. Glad to know that i am doing most.

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  69. Fred Humphrey6/25/14, 12:35 PM

    great tips thanks alot this will surely come in handy!

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  70. That's a bummer, Ada. Unfortunately, you're going to have to re-home him because that is his natural disposition and it isn't going to change. Sorry. :(

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  71. Rhonda Whitaker6/26/14, 4:34 PM

    Where do we order these nest box liners??

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  72. Click on the highlighted words, Rhonda- they bring you right to the source to purchase them!

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  73. I keep finding myself at your site with all of my research. I just wanted to take the time to say thank you for all your hard work and dedication to teaching others, like myself. Thank you!
    ML White

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  74. She's something else, isn't she!

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  75. That's nice of you to say. Thank you. :)

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  76. Can you continue to give chickens probiotics or are they only designed to give if chickens show signs of dirty vents or diarrea ?

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  77. I had the same problem with my girls not going up ladder into the coop. A couple weeks ago, I noticed nesting material had been disturbed a little. Last week I thought I heard a cackling sound coming from that direction. When I checked nesting area, I found 4 brown eggs and 2 white eggs. My 5 Production Red girls were 16 weeks old and my 5 White Leghorns were 15 weeks old. I had not been checking boxes every day for eggs because I didn't think they were quite old enough. I am getting 2 - 3 eggs a day now.

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  78. They can be given daily (just like eating yogurt daily except dairy isn't good for chickens)

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  79. What is the best method to clean eggs? We purchased 6 black Australorps in May. Still waiting for eggs. Just want to be prepared for when it finally happens.

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  80. Abbi Beuby Auger7/25/14, 10:09 AM

    Do you clean your eggs with anything? I don't, but keep reading about cleaning them. Do you find that necessary?

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  81. Ann Marie Wallace7/25/14, 10:23 AM

    Should eggs be washed when we bring them in?

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  82. Kari Skinner7/25/14, 10:40 AM

    Your eggs are so pretty almost as pretty as your chickens:)

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  83. Your advice on chickens and herbs is wonderful i am new to chickens so i have found this site to be most helpful thank-you for sharing your knowledge!

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  84. Is it advisable to clean the eggs if found that there are
    some poop and would you recommend that it’s still consumable?

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  85. SouthernChick7/31/14, 5:16 PM

    Yes!! Love and learning so much. Missing my Daddy. Used to just picking the phone up.

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  86. Hi! So I have couple questions. 1st we were free ranging our chickens. 3 Rhode Island reds. 3 leghorns ,Born april 17 2014. Last week for the first time they crossed the road:(. And we have acre and half of land:(. My neighbors threatened to call spca on us. Well I have kept them in Their coop now except for lil bit before dusk every night. Like an hr. I'm scared I don't want any problems. Any advice please. Also the started layin yesterday!!! And I did wash the eggs with dish sop under cold water and put them in carton in fridge.is this ok? Now im afraid to eat the eggs.:( please help you always do

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  87. You should build them as big a chicken run as you can and put a roof on it so they can use it in bad weather.

    Don't use soap on the eggs and don't wash them until you are ready to use them. The refrigerator is the safest place to store them.

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  88. Thank you. If there poop on them which has only been a couple. I did rinse in water. I just cant put them directly to the fridge. Will this hurt them/ or us . And I have let them out most of the day again I just cant cage them like that but I keep a close eye on them. They love eating the vegetation and bugs and their dust baths. I just hate to confine them like that. Again thanks so much for all your advice.

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  89. I just could not leave your website prior to suggesting that I really loved the
    usual info a person provide to your guests?
    Is gonna be again incessantly to investigate cross-check new posts

    Here is my web-site

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  90. How often do you clean out the nesting boxes and what do you use?? Thanks! Love your blog!!

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  91. how do you take care of a chicken egg inside of a house

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  92. I couldn't figure out where one of my hens was laying her eggs. Finally found her nest in some tall grasses (not ideal, I know). If the eggs get wet before I can collect them (from dew), can I still put them in the fridge and eventually eat them, without worry of contamination? I collect daily in the mornings, so they wouldn't be on the ground very long.

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  93. My policy is: when in doubt, throw it out. It's just not worth the risk of food poisoning.

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  94. Good point. Collected more this afternoon and there was a slug on one. So, I tossed them all. Going to try to encourage her to use the nest box!! Thanks.

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  95. I am 5 months pregnant. Is it safe for me to clean the eggs that are a bit soiled? I've researched this but can't find any definitive info. Thanks!

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  96. Please discuss this issue with your obstetrician.

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  97. Hello, I would really love to have an Olive Egger for my small flock (9), but I cant seem to find anyone that can sell me just one Pullet (5 to 8 months old. I tried several hatcheries. Do you know of anyone that can sell me one? I live in Saint Cloud Fl. Please help..

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  98. Try Laurabella Farm in NC. She has some pullets for sale to ship right now. She is on Facebook .

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  99. Helen Godfrey11/15/14, 10:11 AM

    I put fake eggs in nest box to help hens learn where to lay and it worked great! Now my question is when do I remove the fake eggs? Thanks.

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  100. I have an off cut of artificial turf in my chook house and if any eggs are a bit dirty i just give them a gentle rub on the artificial grass and it cleans them up :)

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  101. I see many promote cleaning the eggs in 50/50 vinegar and water. I just stared doing this and the eggs shells are tacky/sticky especially the darker colored one. Should I dilute more or use another method?

    Thanks

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  102. REALLY?? I have never read that. That's a HORRIBLE idea. Vinegar eats away at the eggshell, that's why your shells are sticky.

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  103. Thanks for clearing that up, I stopped doing it after a couple of tries. I was looking for a way to clean the with out soap and a dozens of sites came up about that on searches.
    Thanks again!
    David

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  104. Wendy Parnell Creasey1/21/15, 8:36 PM

    If they are all laying in the box, then remove the fake eggs. They should continue to lay them there. I never had to use mine. I had one girl lay an egg in the middle of the yard her very first time. Now they lay them all in one box.

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  105. Every now and again I find an egg layed on coop floor that is broken.
    Why would chicken do this when they have been happily laying in nest box? It's very random. Also I have a chicken -Bantam that went broody which I was able to break but she hasn't layer an egg since and has begun to lose feathers. Is she Molting now in January? Should I be concerned? Thanks for any help. BTW I have 4 Bantam hens NO rooster. The other hens lay an egg a day or every other day. Thanks for any advice you can give!!

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