1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

At what age can a hen be a mom?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Mallory8502, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. Mallory8502

    Mallory8502 Chirping

    75
    11
    53
    Apr 26, 2014
    I have a cream legbar/EE mix hen that has become broody. I am sure the eggs are fertilized because I have a cream legbar roo in the enclosure. She started laying at 17 weeks and is only 20 weeks old now. Ever since she started laying she has been hellbent on hatching some eggs even though I collect them from the nest box twice a day. I am thinking about just letting her sit this time, but I was wondering if her age is a problem?

    All of my hens are the same age, and when they just started laying eggs they were teeny tiny eggs. Now they have increased a lot in size and are medium-sized which is probably normal but who knows they might get bigger as time goes on. Does that make any difference in the egg being viable to hatch?

    Also, is there anything else I should be doing for her? I am in the middle of building a second coop and run so she will have a private place to go, but it won't be ready for nearly a week. She just started sitting today, and there isn't much I can do other than mark the eggs I want her to sit on and hope the other birds don't give her problems.
     

  2. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Crowing

    5,291
    639
    318
    Jan 27, 2014
    Central Oregon
    So you have a determined broody on your hands...I think that's great!! Personally I don't think she's too young especially since you say she is really really determined. As long as the other hens (and the roo) leave her alone you should be alright til next week when the other area is finished. But if you have a dog crate it might be wise to move her if they are messing with her. Just make sure she has water and feed close by her and really that's about it. Chickens have the instinct as to what to do, etc. Just watch her closely in case she abandons the nest, etc.

    Best of luck and keep us updated!! [​IMG]
     
  3. Mallory8502

    Mallory8502 Chirping

    75
    11
    53
    Apr 26, 2014
    Thanks! I will move some food and water in for her and try to work faster. How long after she hatches the chicks should I continue to keep her and the chicks separate? Also, will the other chickens not recognize her since she has been gone so long?
     
  4. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Crowing

    5,291
    639
    318
    Jan 27, 2014
    Central Oregon
    Well, for the most part you don't have to worry about her chicks being harmed by the others...mama broody will "take care of business" for sure! Here's a super great page with a wealth of information for you:

    http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/search?q=broody+hatch
    [​IMG]
    Be sure to keep us updated...hope you get a lot of new little fuzzy-butts!!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by