hi sorry i had to post this on this forum but can not post it on the poultry for some reason....i gather my eggs every day, and have noticed some of the egg yolk break in pan when i go to use them...i thought only old eggs do this that was the way you could tell if a egg was old? these eggs are real fresh... any ideas? they are on laying mash and cracked corn and they free range....
I believe that tends to be a sign of old hens - just as is thin shells, double yolks, & larger eggs. I have a couple of old girls now that give weak yolks, all of my younger girl's egg yolks are nice and firm.
I don't think it is a management problem
The best way to tell if an egg is old is to put it in water and see if it lifts of the bottom. As the egg ages, air is absorbed through the shell and the air sack will get larger.
My fresh eggs lay on their side, older ones will stand upright, even older ones will lift off the bottom. My rule is anything that floats more than about a 1" off the bottom goes to the cats. My hens lay way more eggs than I eat so I routinely have eggs that are near two months old that I'm using. I rarely have one that I toss as a floater.
Our eggs are fertile and we have some broodies. I've been noticing that if the eggs are left under a broodie for an entire day the embryo grows enough that you can see a spot on the yolk. I guess that makes the yolk weaker on that spot as that's where mine have been breaking when they do.
Yolks will often break if the pan is too hot. Also, if there is a temperature shock - such as if the eggs have been refrigerated, then they hit the hot pan. In this case, bring the eggs to room temperature before cracking them into the pan - and make sure not to just drop in the egg, but to let it flow slowly while partially holding the shells together. This way the white will begin to cook before the yolk actually is released into the pan. They seldom break if you do it that way.
With a fresh egg, this is very easy, as the white holds together more, and doesn't spread over the pan so much. With an old egg, the whites become more watery and can spread far and wide in the pan, so there is more likelihood of the yolk coming into contact with the hot pan, instead of sitting up nicely on its bed of white.
See what happens if you add the eggs when the pan isn't as hot as you usually let it get.