Glad to know that there's a broody hen thread! I have a buff orpington that's just gone broody for the second time and am trying to decide whether to put her in a broody buster cage or give her eggs.
Can anybody give me some insight on what to do?
First time she went broody was September. She spent 8 days in the broody buster cage before I gave in and gave her 11 fertilized grocery store eggs. She hatched 9 of them (one died on the first day), and mothered them for the next 12 weeks -- she pushed the last one away at the end of December. So she seems like a pretty dedicated mother, and I'm tempted to let her hatch again.
The problem is that we're really not set up for a broody chicken. The coop has two nest boxes. We have 3 chickens, so that's usually plenty. But last time my other girls insisted on sitting on top of her to lay their eggs, which caused all kinds of trouble. We were worried about raccoons and cats if I put her in a box outside. I finally stuck her in a dog crate in our office, which wasn't ideal for anyone.
She's currently in the broody buster being supervised by a very energetic toddler. I'm not optimistic about breaking her of it.
Has anybody had good luck finding new homes for their broody hens? She's pretty stubborn and good at hatching, so finding her a home where she can do that would be awesome. Any ideas on where to look, what to ask about?
Failing that... Any suggestions on how to let her brood that's a bit easier on us all? Any suggestions on where to get non-grocery store eggs on short notice? I'd like the chicks to be a bit easier to get rid of, and since we're in a city, backyard breeds seem to do better than unknown breeds.