Eggs with Blood Spots

Are they safe to eat?

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Are Eggs With Blood Spots Safe to Eat?

No matter how many eggs you’ve cracked in your life, you have probably come across an egg containing a spot of blood at some time or another. You may wonder what it could be? Blood spots in eggs are exactly that — tiny spots of red blood that you may see when you crack open a fresh egg.

Blood spots are normal and fairly common, and are not a cause for concern. The USDA Egg Safety Center says that these eggs are perfectly safe to eat, although you may want to remove the blood spot for aesthetic purposes. All you have to do is remove the spot with a spoon or the tip of a knife and throw it away. After that, continue cooking your egg as you normally would. There is nothing in it that’s harmful for human consumption.

egg with blood spot

Does a Blood Spot Mean an Egg is Fertilized?

It is a common misconception that seeing a blood spot in the egg yolk means it is fertilized. THIS IS UNTRUE! Both fertilized and unfertilized eggs can have blood spots. All eggs, fertilized or not, contain tiny blood vessels that anchor the yolk inside the egg. In a fertilized and incubated egg, those blood vessels will deliver nutrients to a growing chick embryo.

What Causes Blood Spots in Eggs?

Blood spots occur when one of those tiny blood vessels is broken during the laying process. The ruptured vessel forms a tiny speck or dot of blood in the egg. Not to worry, blood spots are a natural occurrence when hens lay their eggs.

The actual cause of blood spots in chicken eggs can vary. Here are a few common reasons why it may happen:

  • Stress to the hen while in the process of forming the egg
  • Genetics can also cause blood spots in the egg
  • Rough handling of the hen while the egg is being formed
  • Poor nutrition such as the lack of proper vitamins and minerals in the hen’s diet
  • Age can also be a factor, especially in young hens who just started laying and older hens at the end of their egg-laying career

Are Blood Spots an Indicator of Hen Health?

If you notice quite a bit of blood, or blood spots accompanied by other unusual egg shapes or characteristics, you may want to evaluate your hen’s health.  Infrequent odd eggs are completely normal, but ongoing odd-shaped eggs or eggs without shells can be an indicator of disease or nutritional deficiency. In this article by Dr Maurice Pitesky and Andy Schneider, The Chicken Whisperer, they discuss the causes of egg abnormalities and what eggs can reveal about hen health.

If you are actively monitoring your chickens’ health, provide them a balanced feed such as Ace Hi 20% Hi Protein Lay Pellets or Kelley’s All Purpose Lay Crumble, designed specifically to meet the needs of egg laying hens. This will ensure you will have a happy and healthy flock with lots of eggs!

Additional Star Milling quality feed products for laying hens:

Be sure to explore the Star Milling Poultry Care Corner for a wide range of informational articles on everything from Care, Eggs and Breeds, to Chicks and Poultry Food!

(Editor’s note: This recently updated post was originally published 11/22/21)

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