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Should I remove SOME of the eggs from a broody hen?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

I should have asked - CAN i remove some of the eggs?

 

My neighbor and I had been saving hatching eggs.  We originally planned to have our own broody hens sit on them (so they can raise them later), but mine wasn’t cooperating.  On Friday, my neighbor put all 14 eggs under her broody hen because it was time to do SOMETHING with those eggs.  They are 2 distinct breeds, so we know who will get which chicks.

 

Sure enough, on Sunday, my best broody hen became, well, broody.  Since I will ultimately be the mom of about half of them, I’m  thinking it might be easier to take my eggs now and put them under my hen, than to wait till they hatch and take the newborn chicks.  But I’m concerned that taking those eggs will traumatize their broody hen, and maybe she’ll stop sitting, or freak out and break some of the eggs.  I don’t want to mess up my neighbors hatch.

 

So the question I am asking of all my backyard chicken mentors:  Is it better for me to take my eggs now, which I’m sure my hen will accept?  Or is it better to leave the current broody hen undisturbed so she will finish hatching them?  As of now, she’s only been sitting for 3 days.   Any ideas?  Thanks for your help. :)


Edited by smithnan - 5/2/16 at 7:43pm
post #2 of 4

I don't think removing some of the eggs from the broody's clutch will cause any problems, but if you're concerned and if you are able to, wait until she gets up for a break and a bit to eat and then take some of the eggs. Or do it after dark when she's sleepy and less likely to kick up a fuss. It also depends how tame the hen is, if she's used to people. If she's tame, she would probably be o.k. with being messed with a bit, if she's "wild" she may fly off the nest and not return for awhile, and then reluctantly. 

 

“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 

 

~ Shel Silverstein
 

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“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 

 

~ Shel Silverstein
 

Reply
post #3 of 4
Go ahead and take some of the eggs. She won't even know they're gone!
Official scribe of the citizens of Brahmalot, personal servant to the kings and queens therein.  Proud owner of not one, but two Great Dane puppies!
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Official scribe of the citizens of Brahmalot, personal servant to the kings and queens therein.  Proud owner of not one, but two Great Dane puppies!
Reply
post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 
Well just to follow up. The neighbors hen is tame, but was a first time mama. She didn't seem too traumatized when we took the eggs, but she would not return to sit, she never did go back. sad.png

Oh well I guess you live and learn, right?
Edited by smithnan - 5/8/16 at 7:07am
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