1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Another broody with no rooster...how to handle?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mobius, Apr 6, 2017.

  1. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well my lovely Wyandotte has gone broody again...she is sitting in the nest box this time and keeping eggs warm and not out with the flock.

    Soooo, there is no rooster, these eggs are not fertile and I am not hatching. Yesterday I took her (easily) out of the nest box (she is very docile) and plopped her down with the rest of her flock where she started foraging. And removed eggs underneath her. They were nice and warm of course. I think she has been picking a few breast feathers but not really noticeable...

    There aren't any apparent interaction problems with the rest, they just get in the nestbox with her or go to the other nestbox to lay. No arguing or squawking or anything.

    If I just take her out everyday when I feed the flock, and plop her down with them, do you think this is adequate? I don't really want to crate her or ice her unless I absolutely have to. She is not trying to escape the yard....like she did last summer...

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

    20,197
    3,293
    401
    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    Taking her off the nest repeatedly won't work. Three days in an elevated wire crate with food and water does the job every time. Sitting in a crate for three days isn't really that different from sitting on a nest.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you @junebuggena . Good to know. She is naughty. Poor thing, she wants to be a mommie.

    But is there any real reason to break her? I will if I have to...

    I did last year by crating her and slapping frozen peas under her rear end...she was broken after about 24-36 hours, lol. At that time I felt it necessary because she had escaped the yard and started a nest in the forest.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2017
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,452
    3,520
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    If she's just getting started, and you're available to go out and boot her off several times a day, you can give that a try. It might be enough to keep her from getting hormonal enough to be really dedicated......or it might not. Hormones are powerful things [​IMG].

    I don't like to let a hen brood with no reward. It's hard on their bodies, they lose condition. They're also prone to mites while they brood. And, they're not laying eggs, so it's kind of like a triple threat....I'm willing to accept these for the reward of baby chicks, but if there's no chicks, I don't want to put the hen through that. I'd rather just break her and be done with it.

    I know folks seem to think being crated is somehow bad for the bird, but honestly she'd be self-isolating were she broody, it's not that different.


    Or......you can send her to me! I've yet to have a hen go broody this spring, despite telling them I have lovely eggs for them to set [​IMG]
     
  5. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good enough for me, that makes total sense as to why not to let her go broody. Many thanks to you both. [​IMG]
     
  6. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    Update today: This morning she was out with all the other chickens for hours until this afternoon. I checked the nest boxes and they were empty of chickens and eggs. All available as usual for morning feeding.

    Checked just now (couldn't see her) and sure enough, on the nest. I removed her, and found two new eggs.

    I THINK she might be doing this brooding only when there are new eggs laid.[​IMG]

    Answer: Collect eggs and throw her out. We shall try this for a couple-three days. I can keep an eye on her during the day. It is easy to count up to six.

    She is out foraging right now.

    Chickens are mysterious sometimes...takes me a while to catch up!
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2017
  7. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    And update today: I was wrong.

    She was back yesterday sitting on the nest with NO eggs in it. Theory disproved. Removed her.[​IMG]

    This morning: back on the nest with two eggs under her. Removed her and she ate with the others

    Next step: Crate. With food and water. This morning. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2017
  8. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well guess who is back with the flock all day and NOT back on the nest? Little Miss Broody, that's who. She was scrabbling to get out of the cage this morning (for the first time interested in getting out) so I let her out to eat with the flock, and she has stayed out.

    Three days on a dime. In the cage.

    I will keep an eye on her.

    Thank you for the help and sound advice!
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017
  9. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

    20,197
    3,293
    401
    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    Works like a charm every time.
     
  10. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm a believer![​IMG][​IMG]

    She is in the dustbath right now, haha.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by