An egg is made from the inside out. The yolk is made first, and then wrapped in a layer of egg white, before being neatly and beautifully packaged up in an eggshell.
The beginning of an egg is the tiny ova which takes a week to grow into a proper egg yolk. If you cut a boiled egg in half and look at the yolk, the dark rings were layers made during the day and the light layers during the hours of darkness. Strange but true!
When the yolk is ready it is released along the oviduct, where the egg white is added, which mainly consists of protein, water and minerals.
Then the egg carries on where it grows two connecting chalaza strands at the top and bottom, which anchor the yolk to the shell keeping it in the centre of the egg.
Next, the shell membranes form around the white and the egg continues down into the uterus where the outer shell, made from calcium carbonate, is added. The shell is a great bit of design, on average only 0.3mm thick, but it is incredibly strong.
This whole process takes 24-26 hours and requires lots of protein and calcium in the hen’s diet. My customers save their washed egg shells for me to crush and feed back to the hens for added calcium. I also make sure to give them high protein layer pellets, yoghurt and protein rich foods.