A few questions about eggs...

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Red, May 29, 2007.

  1. Red

    Red Songster

    Mar 17, 2007
    Okay so this is my first post on the forum so i hope i get this right [​IMG]

    Our light sussex hen has gone broody and my dad bought some fertile buff orpington eggs to put under her, which we did yesterday. This is our first go at hatching chicken eggs, and i've been reading the site like crazy to get as much info as possible...but i have a few questions that i'm hoping somebody will be able to answer?

    Firstly, i know it won't be for a while yet, but round about what day do the chicks in the egg start talking (well cheeping) to the mother hen?

    And will the broody hen take time away from the eggs to eat and drink etc? At the moment we weren't sure so we moved water and feed up to her, but should she be taking breaks from the nest?

    Lastly, we're thinking of seperating her from our other two chickens because the top of the pecking order is bullying her...is it okay to seperate them or should we leave her with her friends?

    Sorry for all the questions, thank you in advance for any replies [​IMG]

    Red [​IMG]
  2. Whirlwind

    Whirlwind Songster

    Apr 14, 2007
    Tuttle, Oklahoma
    Hi. I don't know when the chicks start talking back to mom. My hen clucked to her eggs from day one.

    Yes she will get up to eat and drink and have a large.smelly broody poo.

    I would move her. I moved my hen and eggs to a large dog crate. She won't need much room for a while. I would do this at night as it will stress her out less.

    good luck, let us know about your hatch and of course we will want pics.
  3. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    I agree that you should separate her. Whne I did this, one of the other chickens actually pecked at one of the fertile eggs and broke it.
  4. Red

    Red Songster

    Mar 17, 2007
    Thanks for your replies!

    Well yesterday one of the eggs got smashed and we don't know how...possibly one of the other hens pecked at it like yours tiffanyh?? Two of the other eggs have got dried yolk on them now, and we tried to get as much off as we can [​IMG]

    But last night we seperated her and put her in a little coop-thing we built from a rabbit hutch & run. She has a nest box and a little bit of run so she can dust bathe and eat. We figured that's be enough for her while she's broody.

    When (if) the chicks hatch i'll get my dad to put pics up. Thanks again for the advice.

  5. Hotwings

    Hotwings Songster

    Jan 27, 2007
    southwestern Michigan
    Good luck with your broody. Separating her was a good thing. You will have to keep a chart for the hatch date. Have you heard about candling your eggs? A dedicated broody will go into a sort of trancelike state and some won't budge off the nest for nothing. Make sure her food and water are nearby. A broody may pick feathers off her breast to better incubate her eggs. Watching a egg hatch with a hen is a tue expierence and it is interesting to watch.
  6. jimnjay

    jimnjay Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Bryant Alabama
    Sounds like you have a good set up for her. They do like to dust and flap around when they get up from the eggs, usually everyday for about 10 minutes, don't panic if it is a bit longer. When I have moved my hens I have found they try to get back to the spot they first started to sit. If your girl is in a hutch on her own, that is good. Just keep it clean of poo each day. She will usually stop getting off the nest around 2 days prior to the hatch. That may be when the little ones start to peep and she know its time to keep them covered.

    I always handfeed my broodies some hardboiled egg when they are setting. They all appreciate that extra little boost and it gives them confidence in you. I have only once had a broody that would peck me and they let me hole the babies which makes it nice to keep them tame
    Last edited: May 31, 2007
  7. Red

    Red Songster

    Mar 17, 2007
    We tried to candle the eggs tonight at day 4 but we found it really hard to see anything - both with a handheld torch and a spotlight.

    We think we saw veins in one or maybe two as described on this website, but the others it was mainly a mottled pattern on the shell - I have seen pictures of bacteria infected eggs which looked very similar but could it be just the egg shell pores we could see?

    The eggs have been kept in a clean nest, but a couple did get splashed with yolk when one of the eggs was smashed by one of the other hens before we seperated her.

    Here's hoping all goes well...

    Last edited: Jun 1, 2007
  8. BirdBrain

    BirdBrain Prefers Frozen Tail Feathers

    May 7, 2007
    Red, don't be too hasty to discard any yet. It is still way early and those eggs with the mottled look may be just fine. I think the standard is to candle them at days 7 and 14. Keep us posted.

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