Keeping eggs in the summer

I got my first egg today! What a surprise! It came from my bard rock who is just 4 months old! We know because she sang us a lovely announcement. Unfortunately she laid it in the run where it is a little cooler an slightly darker. I also have a sand floor in the run which they dig out nice depressions to cool off in. I brought it up to the nesting box, which is on the second floor in the roost, trying to entice them into laying in the boxes. My question is how long can eggs remain outside in this heat and stay good?Proud owner of my first laying hen!

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  • Congratulations!  My Barred Rocks are about the same age and are making noises that sound like egg-laying noises.  Guess I better start checking for eggs, too.

    • Wow! I wasn't expecting any laying activity (mine are the same age) until July! I guess I should unblock the laying boxes (I've separated them with chicken wire from the rest of the hen house). It would be nice to get my first egg and not have my housesitter call me with the news while I'm away on vacation!!

    • Well I think another chicken (my gold sex link ) started laying on Monday. She was busy singing off and on thay day. It was more of a golden brown instead of the pink color of the barred rock! She is the same age as my barred rock too. So yes, I would unblock the nesting box but don't be disappointed if the eggs are laid haphazardly around the coop!
  • Congratulations!

  • Technically they can last for a number of days. In nature, the hen may take a couple weeks getting her clutch together before sitting on them, and those eggs are still good. In our heat, though, I wouldn't wait 14 days. LOL! I've picked up eggs a few days old without any problem. 

    Keep the bloom on them (don't wash them). The bloom keeps bacteria out. If you need to wash them, wash just before using them.

    If you have doubts about an egg, you can test it. Drop the egg in a glass of water. It should sit on the bottom, maybe just barely, dancing around a bit. But if it floats, watch out! The air pocket inside the egg enlarges as the egg ages, so the older the egg, the higher it sits in water.

    • And congratulations on your first egg!

    • Thanks for the feedback. Very helpful! It's funny, I almost feel like I laid it myself! It is the most beautiful that egg that I have ever seen, lol.
    • You've put a lot of work into getting her to the point of laying. You might not physically be laying eggs, but you're certainly achieved something worth celebrating! :)

  • If you want to entice them to lay in the nesting boxes don't use a real egg. Plastic bright colored Easter eggs will even work but if you want something that looks like an egg pick up a few at a craft store like Joanne's or Michael's and just put those in the nesting boxes. But the real eggs in your fridge as soon as possible, especially in this heat. We tried to collect twice a day once at the minimum.

  • I collect mine once every evening. In the summer, at least once a day is wise.

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