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Could broody hen be eating her eggs?

post #1 of 2
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I have a hen that went broody on me last year, and she hatched out 3 chicks.  She went broody again this year, so we isolated her again and gave her 12 eggs.  At about day 20, I noticed a broken egg in the nesting box and thought that perhaps a chick had hatched.  I waited until day 21 to check under her and discovered that there were only 10 eggs under her and none had hatched.  At day 23, there were only 6 eggs and no new chicks.  I am now down to 1 egg under her and it has been 28 days.  There aren't really any egg shells in there.  Could she be eating them?  And why?  She was successful hatching eggs before. 

post #2 of 2
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Originally Posted by Cook626 View Post
 

I have a hen that went broody on me last year, and she hatched out 3 chicks.  She went broody again this year, so we isolated her again and gave her 12 eggs.  At about day 20, I noticed a broken egg in the nesting box and thought that perhaps a chick had hatched.  I waited until day 21 to check under her and discovered that there were only 10 eggs under her and none had hatched.  At day 23, there were only 6 eggs and no new chicks.  I am now down to 1 egg under her and it has been 28 days.  There aren't really any egg shells in there.  Could she be eating them?  And why?  She was successful hatching eggs before. 

For what ever reason the eggs you gave the hen were either infertile or unviable.  Laying eggs and hatching chicks is serious business.  A hen puts a lot of herself into her eggs and chicks and I see nothing wrong with a sore bottomed hen who has faithfully hovered eggs to no good effect recovering some of the resources that she expended laying and sitting on her eggs.  Hen eggs don't come with a serial number so your hen is ignorant of where the eggs she is sitting on came from, she is just treating them like they were her own which is what you expected of your brood hen when you gave her the eggs 

 

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Edited by chickengeorgeto - 5/3/16 at 1:55am
Keep your chickens safe from predators, buy and wear fur. 
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Keep your chickens safe from predators, buy and wear fur. 
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