1st time with a broody chicken!

kd949

In the Brooder
10 Years
Jun 5, 2009
21
0
22
Lilly is on the nest and won't get up....she has gone broody!

These are my first chickens (there are 3) and Lilly and Ruby just turned one year last week. (Violet is 3 months old). Anyway, I have no plans on adding to the flock, what should I do about the broody one? Should I try to get her off the nest or just let her be? Should I try to sneak the egg/eggs that she must have under her out, or leave them there? It's been 2 days, how long does this usually last? I searched the forum, but my ADD kicked in when the first 5 posts I read didn't have the info I was looking for in them and I thought I would just go ahead and post


Thanks for all the help!! You guys are great!!
 

gryeyes

Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
15,506
384
358
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
If you don't want any more chickens, then take the eggs from her. You may have to wait until she's off the nest taking a potty or food break..... if she's really, really unhappy about it. Otherwise, if she doesn't peck hard, try to reach under her and take her eggs.

Somebody else on BYC will be able to give you pointers on "breaking" broody hens so they start to lay again.
 

SpringChickens

Songster
11 Years
Feb 1, 2009
2,267
15
214
Lexington, KY
If you don't want her broody - put her in a wire cage where she can feel the cool air underneath her - that usually breaks them in a few days. You'll know she's no longer broody when she lays an egg.
 

kenora44

In the Brooder
9 Years
May 5, 2010
42
0
22
A friend of ours put the broody hen in cold water. Took 3 times and she was very upset...seemed to work for him though, not really sure why?
 

kd949

In the Brooder
10 Years
Jun 5, 2009
21
0
22
What happens if I just leave her alone?????
 

ruthiesue

In the Brooder
11 Years
Jul 31, 2008
19
0
22
I just leave them alone. Why try to change their genetic predisposition? It sure didn't work with all those left-handed kids that they tortured for years! Just leave her alone, collect your eggs daily, or let her set on themand hatch one or two out. Mark the ones you are going to leave with a pencil, and don't pick them up. Pretty soon she'll stop and get up and be herself again. Broodiness doesn't last forever.
 

SpringChickens

Songster
11 Years
Feb 1, 2009
2,267
15
214
Lexington, KY
You can try to just let her be, and changes are good that everything will be fine.

My hen has been broody for 5+ weeks before (it was over 2 weeks before we got any eggs under her), so if you're prepared for 5 or more weeks of no eggs, go for it. What scares me is that I've read stories about hens that have literally starved themselves to death.
 

Nostalchic

Songster
11 Years
Oct 14, 2008
495
3
121
North Front Range Colorado
Take her off the nest whenever you see her there. Keep the eggs picked up frequently, and don't leave any fake eggs in the nest either! Take her out of the nest and put her up on the roost at night. If none of that works, and it's really bugging you, try the wire cage with good air flow underneath.
She will survive, but she won't eat, drink, or poop normally while she's trying to set, and because it's prolonged (ie: a hen that HATCHES eggs will do so in 3 weeks or so and then start eating and drinking a LOT to catch up), it make take a significant toll on her health. They'll often get quite thin. She also won't lay any eggs while she's brooding. Some hens give up much more quickly than others, good luck!
 

macmama

Songster
9 Years
Apr 9, 2010
239
1
109
Gilbert AZ
I gave mine a shower to break her-- but I would have just left her if she wasn't my ONLY hen left laying. (It's broody fever over here) I have heard it can be months before they stop... and my first one seemed determined even though she was sitting on absolutely nothing.

BTW, I have a Lilly, Ruby, and Violet too! (and a Bluebell, Rose, Indigo, Scarlet, Ivy, Daisy, & Clover)
 

PunkinPeep

Songster
10 Years
Mar 31, 2009
3,642
67
229
SouthEast Texas
It's broody fever at my house too. It's 95 degrees outside, i'm hardly getting any eggs, and everybody's going broody - and sitting on nothing.

I love broodies, but broodies with nothing to sit on is pretty pointless.

I'm thinking about some cold baths.
 

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