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Worms in Chicken Eggs: Symptoms, Causes+ Prevention Tips

Worms in Chicken Eggs: Symptoms, Causes+ Prevention Tips

The presence of worms in chicken eggs is a concerning issue and can be caused by several factors.

Here are some possible causes Worms in Chicken Eggs:

  1. Infected Hens: If the hens laying the eggs are infected with intestinal worms, there is a higher chance of finding worms or worm eggs in the eggs they produce. Worms can pass through the hen’s digestive system and contaminate the eggs during the formation process.
  2. Contaminated Environment: Chickens can become infected with worms through exposure to contaminated environments. If the chickens have access to areas with feces, contaminated soil, or surfaces hosting worm eggs or larvae, they can ingest them and become infected. Infected chickens may then lay eggs with worm eggs inside.
  3. Lack of Deworming: Failure to implement a regular deworming program for your flock can increase the risk of worm infestations. Without appropriate deworming treatments, worms can thrive in the chickens’ digestive systems and contaminate the eggs.
  4. Wild Birds or Rodents: Wild birds and rodents can carry and spread worms to chickens. If your chicken coop or free-range area is frequented by wild birds or rodents, they can introduce worm eggs or larvae, leading to infestations in the chickens and potentially contaminated eggs.
  5. Unhygienic Nesting Areas: Dirty or unhygienic nesting areas can contribute to worm infestations in eggs. If the nesting materials or nesting boxes are not properly maintained, they can become breeding grounds for worms and increase the likelihood of egg contamination.

6 Common Types Of Worms In Chickens

There are several common types of worms that can affect chickens. Here are six of them:

  1. Roundworms (Ascarids): Roundworms are one of the most common types of worms in chickens. They can be up to several inches long and can be found in the intestines. Infected chickens may show signs of weight loss, poor growth, diarrhea, or a potbellied appearance.
  2. Tapeworms (Cestodes): Tapeworms are flat, segmented worms that attach to the lining of the chicken’s intestines. They can be identified by the presence of small, rice-like segments in the droppings. Tapeworm infections may cause weight loss, decreased egg production, or general weakness in chickens.
  3. Hairworms (Capillaria): Hairworms are thin, thread-like worms that live in the digestive tract. They can cause damage to the intestinal lining and may lead to diarrhea, weight loss, decreased egg production, or anemia in chickens.
  4. Caecal Worms (Heterakis): Caecal worms reside in the caeca, which are pouches at the beginning of the chicken’s large intestine. Infected chickens may show no obvious signs, but caecal worms can transmit a parasite called Histomonas meleagridis, which causes a serious disease called blackhead.
  5. Gapeworms (Syngamus trachea): Gapeworms infest the respiratory system of chickens, particularly the trachea. Heavy infestations can cause respiratory distress, gasping for air, coughing, and general weakness.
  6. Threadworms (Strongyloides): Threadworms are tiny worms that live in the small intestine. They can cause diarrhea, weight loss, poor growth, and an overall decline in the chicken’s health.

Prevention and regular deworming are important to control worm infestations in chickens. Consult with a veterinarian experienced in poultry health for guidance on appropriate deworming schedules and medications specific to your flock’s needs. Good sanitation practices, proper hygiene, and minimizing exposure to wild birds or contaminated environments also play a crucial role in preventing worm infections in chickens.

Prevention Tips for Worms in Chicken Eggs

Preventing worms in chicken eggs is important for maintaining the health of your flock and ensuring the safety of the eggs. Here are some tips to help prevent worm infestations in chicken eggs:

  1. Regular Deworming: Implement a regular deworming program for your chickens. Consult with a veterinarian experienced in poultry health to determine the appropriate deworming schedule and medications for your flock. Follow the recommended dosage and administration instructions for effective parasite control.
  2. Maintain Clean Coop and Nesting Areas: Ensure your chicken coop and nesting areas are kept clean and hygienic. Regularly remove feces, soiled bedding, and any materials that may attract worms. Clean and disinfect nesting boxes, perches, and other coop surfaces to minimize the risk of worm contamination.
  3. Practice Good Hygiene: Practice good personal hygiene when handling chickens and eggs. Wash your hands thoroughly before and after handling chickens or collecting eggs to prevent the spread of potential contaminants.
  4. Minimize Wild Bird and Rodent Access: Take steps to discourage wild birds and rodents from entering your chicken coop or free-range area. Block access points, secure feed storage, and minimize the presence of food or water sources that may attract them. Wild birds and rodents can introduce worms to your flock, increasing the risk of infestations.
  5. Rotate Grazing Areas: If your chickens have access to pasture or free-range areas, practice rotational grazing. Regularly rotate their grazing areas to allow the land to rest and minimize the build-up of worm larvae in the soil.
  6. Provide Clean Water and Feed: Ensure your chickens have access to clean and fresh water at all times. Contaminated water sources can contribute to worm infestations. Also, provide a balanced diet and high-quality feed to support your chickens’ overall health and immune system, reducing their susceptibility to worms.
  7. Regular Coop Cleaning: Regularly clean and maintain your chicken coop. Remove old bedding, droppings, and any debris that may harbor worm eggs or larvae. Proper coop management helps minimize the risk of worm infestations.
  8. Quarantine New Birds: When introducing new birds to your flock, quarantine them for a period of time. This allows you to observe and address any potential worm infestations before introducing them to healthy chickens.

Remember, prevention is key in managing worms in chicken eggs. By implementing these preventive measures, practicing good hygiene, and following a deworming program, you can help reduce the risk of worm infestations and ensure the production of healthy and safe eggs.

Detection of Worm Parasites in Chicken Eggs by Candling

Candling is a method commonly used to detect certain characteristics of eggs, such as fertility, development, or the presence of internal defects. While candling can reveal some information about the internal contents of an egg, it is not a reliable method for detecting worm parasites specifically.

Worm parasites, such as roundworms or tapeworms, reside in the digestive system of chickens and may contaminate the eggs during the formation process. They are not typically visible through candling alone because they are located inside the chicken’s body, not within the egg itself.

Candling involves shining a light source, such as a flashlight or specialized candler, through the egg to observe the internal contents. It can reveal features like the air cell, development stages, or the presence of blood spots or abnormalities. However, it cannot provide a direct view of the chicken’s digestive system or detect the presence of worm parasites.

To assess the presence of worm parasites in chickens, it is necessary to perform specific diagnostic tests. These tests may involve examining fecal samples under a microscope to identify worm eggs or conducting necropsies (postmortem examinations) to directly observe the presence of worms in the digestive tract.

If you suspect a worm infestation in your flock, it is recommended to consult with a veterinarian experienced in poultry health. They can guide you on proper diagnostic procedures and provide appropriate treatment options to address any potential worm parasites and maintain the health of your chickens.

Related Faq’s To Worms In Chickens And Eggs

Can I Eat Eggs If Chickens Have Worms?

If your chickens have worms, it is generally safe to consume their eggs. The presence of worms in chickens does not directly affect the safety of the eggs for human consumption. However, it is important to note that maintaining good flock health and implementing proper deworming protocols are essential for the overall well-being of the chickens and to minimize the risk of worm infestations.

How Do You Know If a Chicken Egg Has Worms?

Worms themselves are not typically found inside chicken eggs. The presence of worms in eggs is rare and unlikely. Worms primarily reside in the digestive system of chickens and are expelled from the body through feces. Proper egg collection and handling practices, including routine cleaning and inspection, can help ensure the eggs are free from visible contaminants.

Are Chicken Worms Harmful to Humans?

The types of worms that commonly affect chickens, such as roundworms and tapeworms, are typically species-specific and do not pose significant health risks to humans. However, it is important to practice good personal hygiene when handling eggs and chickens to minimize the risk of any potential transmission of bacteria or parasites. Thoroughly cook eggs before consuming them to eliminate any potential pathogens.

What Is the White Worm in My Chicken Egg?

If you find a white worm-like structure in a chicken egg, it is most likely a maggot or larvae of a fly that has infested the egg. Flies can lay their eggs on eggs that are soiled or in unsanitary conditions. These larvae are not harmful to humans, but they indicate a hygiene issue in the coop or egg storage area. Proper cleaning and maintenance of the coop, prompt egg collection, and regular hygiene practices can help prevent such infestations.

How Do You Treat Worm Eggs?

Treating worm eggs requires a comprehensive approach to address worm infestations in chickens. It involves deworming the chickens with appropriate medications recommended by a veterinarian experienced in poultry health. Deworming treatments target the adult worms, larvae, or eggs present in the chickens’ digestive system. Follow the veterinarian’s instructions regarding the dosage, administration, and timing of the deworming medications.


Additionally, implementing good biosecurity measures, maintaining a clean coop environment, practicing proper sanitation, and minimizing exposure to wild birds or contaminated areas can help prevent re-infestation and reduce the presence of worm eggs in the environment.

It is important to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis, guidance on treatment options, and advice on implementing effective deworming programs tailored to your specific flock’s needs. They can provide appropriate medications and assist in establishing a preventive strategy to maintain the health of your chickens.