Many atimes, i have met a couple of poultry farmers who have asked me questions like “Please some of my birds find it difficult to lay with blood stains on the egg. What could have been the cause and solution?
I have taken my time to come up with a comprehensive write up as regards this issue. And i hope we poultry farmers would learn a lotta new things as they read up. Its just 3 minutes. So read it all!
Probable Causes of Blood Stained Eggs
Large Egg sizes
Excessive egg size that is too large for the oviduct during the process of laying eggs can cause a tear in the oviduct or vent which will result to blood stained eggs. This can be common in birds that have a too small body frame i.e underweight birds due to the fact that the naturally egg size increases overtime as the birds grow older in age.
Another reason can be the issue of Prolapse
In one sentence, this occurs when there is bleeding at the vent when part of the oviduct is also released outside the vent (bum region) when the birds are laying.
Sometimes the oviduct does not immediately retract back into the hen once an egg has been laid. This condition is known as prolapse. … If not noticed immediately, other hens will pick at the protruding oviduct, damaging it and preventing it from retracting
This occurs when dominant birds are pecking less submissive birds in a flock. Coincidentally, the most severe form of cannibalism amongst others is Vent Pecking. Prolapse can as well cause vent pecking amongst birds.
Furthermore many human factors can consequently lead to vent pecking .These can range from absence of feed and water to inadequate stocking density, inadequate feeding space and feeding equipment where birds are competing/fighting to feed especially when hungry which will lead to incidence of pecking.
Health issues such as injuries around the vent region or even the incidence of prolapse discussed above can as well result to blood stained eggs during laying.
Other causes may include
Excessive Bodyweight or too small body frame.
Reduce light intensity as this reduces visibility especially at night period. Excessively bright lights or too long a light duration usually causes stress to birds making them aggressive and hostile to each other. To reduce light intensity, you can use red lights or use any red material to cover the white lights.
To prevent pecking/cannibalism that results to injuries, it is expected that the birds are de-beaked at the right age when necessary.
Other preventive measures include….
Removing injured birds from the flock to reduce mortality or worsening of the injury around the vent of the birds.
Provide adequate feeding and drinking equipment as well as adequate spacing for your flock.
Stress related causes which include poor ventilation, hot temperature, excessive light intensity should be avoided as these factors can cause aggressiveness in a flock which may result to various forms of pecking of which Vent Pecking seems to be the most problematic.
In terms of management during rearing when the birds seem to have gotten to the stage of point of lay, do not stimulate your birds into laying until you attain 5% production as early light stimulation is detrimental to the flock if not properly timed. This may result to “premature laying” especially when the lighter birds in the flock have not gotten to the standard body weight (1.5kg) that is expected for them to start laying.
If our farmers can abide to the basic poultry practises listed above, i promise you, you wont have to battle with blood stained eggs ..No! Not again!