Here is my cuckoo maran with her four babies. She has them up on a perch in their coop. They are all under her on the perch. Cutest thing I ever saw. She is a very good mother. Two chicks I grafted on her.
Edited by h2oratt - 5/24/16 at 9:16pm
By the looks of her head, as well as back. The hen would have been physical damaged before she became infertile. Longer, her back and head would have been bare and bleeding. At that point other birds may have started to go after the blood and made the situation worse.
Staggered hatches are to be avoided when possible as it has its problems and can end in real disappointment. Occasionally I have eggs hatch late. I pull hatched chicks and return them when the hatch is complete. Pulling chicks after they hatch will cause the hen to remain brooding eggs.
My baby is sitting on some eggs and its day 20. Its about 80 degrees outside and this is her 2nd time being broody(1st time failed). If an egg was pushed out or missed and not sat on for maybe 9 hours is it still possible for it to still be alive? (assuming it didn't get pushed out for being dead)
Question, do you want to do a If--fie hatch?? If the Broody will stay on the eggs, if you take away the chicks as they hatch, if she will do this or if she will do that, if she don't burn out, if you will monitor and help when needed, if, if, if---IF you do just add eggs at will---any time you want.
Now let me tell you what I would do, I would move and set my broody with FRESH eggs---All fresh eggs, All put under her at the same Minute---((((if you do not move her away from the others you will have to mark all the set-eggs and remove any fresh layed eggs daily)))) When you put all her setting eggs under her at the same time---All will hatch about the same time---usually within a day. Then she gets off the nest with her babies and enjoys them. If we allow other chickens or we add eggs days later and keep adding-----------after she hatches the first few, we take them away from her to keep her setting----in a way we are saying-----no you can not enjoy your babies----I want you to sit on eggs for days, weeks Longer-----I am not going to do my hens like that---Sorry---I do not think or feel its right.
All 72 hens I have set in the last year hatched their eggs by day 21 and all got off the nest with their babies and enjoyed them.
""""I""" would Never add or allow other hens to add to the broody hens nest. Adding(staggered hatch) creates problems most of the time---really more problems for the chicken owner too----so many things you have to do to try and keep her on the nest. Good Luck which ever way you want to go!