4 hens sitting on one clutch..who will be the mama?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by nayalusa, Dec 23, 2014.

  1. nayalusa

    nayalusa In the Brooder

    May 1, 2014
    We had been considering letting one of our broody hens hatch some chicks. To our surprise as we began to let her lay eggs in her secret spot up under the eave of the coop and didn't collect them, 3 more hens followed suit and began laying and taking turns sitting there! When one would get up to eat another would immediately replace it. I then noticed a third appearing to wait patiently on the straw bale below for her turn to sit, and finally a 4th was on the same nest when I checked this afternoon. It's only day 1 and so far we have accumulated only 4 eggs. We're thinking as long as they're warm and someones staying on them full time we'll see what happens. We have a great roo who takes excellent care of his flock so most are likely fertilized. All of the hens (and roo) were raised together as chicks and seem to get along really well. None of these hens have ever been mamas before so it's definitely a wait and see thing but we're going to try to let nature take it's course and see what happens. It seems from what I've read on this forum that getting them to hatch may not be as difficult as determining who will be doing the mothering and whether or not with the confusion, [​IMG]

    the chicks will get taken care of at all. If we make it to that stage I'll keep a close eye and definitely go the brooder/heat lamp route if needed but I hope that at least one of my girls will do the job! We'll look for updates from others and give some from here as well. Hope to hear some success stories from multiple broody hen owners! Thanks!
  2. ThePRfan

    ThePRfan Songster

    Sep 27, 2014
    Miss broody has went twice each year.I had to hens do the same thing.They sat together and everything,but adventually we split bot up,although both were succesful.That was when they were together.after splitting them 1 mother recently hatched 4 chicks.Mrs.Broody then was a young hen,and actually didn't for the chicks.
    The other hen hatched 4(i think),and 2 died.(1 not sure of other was killed by dog,so for the most part only that broody was a good mother.She succesfuly carried 2 babies,and protected them well.This last summer/spring I had my year old hen try.We didn't let her hatch,but she did have to share nesting.If your wondering how they protected,i'll tell.We didn't let her hatch,but she tried.She was defending from everything.Same with Mrs.Broody.
    I'd guess it matter on age,because Mrs.Broody never hatched any,but protected with way more defense.
    This year we'll let them hatch,and just maybe Mrs.Prissy(My year old hen who tried brooding)will do it once again.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2014

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