bought eggs to put under broody hens, advice needed

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Misfit Farm, Jul 19, 2011.

  1. Misfit Farm

    Misfit Farm Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 14, 2007
    Reno, NV
    Hi everyone,
    I have purchased a 14+ Marans "variety pack" of eggs. I have 4 super broody hens (3 are silky crosses and 1 is a Black Australorp). These hens are pretty much broody all the time. This is the first time I have purchased eggs for hatching - how does my plan sound? I have 3 plastic dog kennels that I am going to put in an unused horse stall which we will make "chicken proof" by making chicken wire gates to use instead of the regular stall door. I will put shaving on the stall floor and in the kennels and I will put nest boxes in the kennels (these are large and XL kennels). I plan on dividing the eggs up and putting them under 3 hens so that way if 1 hen decides to not be broody anymore before the eggs hatch I won't lose all of the eggs. Now here are my questions:

    1. Should I use the kennel doors to keep each hen with her nest - the kennels are big enough for the nest and food and water bowls and a little room for the hens to move around? Or will they be okay with a nest in each kennel but no doors (I'm afraid with no doors 2 hens might try to sit on 1 nest leaving 1 nest of eggs uncared for...).

    2. Should I move the hens out of the main coop and into the stall/kennels before the eggs arrive to make sure they stay broody once moved?

    I am so worried that now that I have spent almost $50 that this will not work out...[​IMG]

  2. Savannah Poultry

    Savannah Poultry The Source

    Mar 29, 2010
    Lakeview, OR
    Good questions. I always have to keep my broodys seperate from each other cuz they always swap nests and do crazy stuff. But I see all the time here on BYC peoples pictures of 3 or 4 hens sitting on nests right next to each other
  3. jm93030

    jm93030 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2009
    the idea sounds good
    i think you should keep doors

    silkies tend to sit on anyones eggs

    i had that issue before

    sometimes they fight for any nest and break eggs

    also i noticed that they dont like to be moved from where they are

    try first without eggs in some cases you break the broodiness by changing enviroment
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2011
  4. Savannah Poultry

    Savannah Poultry The Source

    Mar 29, 2010
    Lakeview, OR
    Quote:Yes! Thats what I forgot to say! Sometimes changing their nest has bad results. Thats why my broodys don't usually have babies because I'm just not set up for them to be able to hatch in the boxes I have. They are just too high up. So when I move them they usually quit.
  5. Rowell Fowl

    Rowell Fowl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2009
    SF East Bay Area
    When my Black Australorp went broody and I decided to order hatching eggs, I moved her to our little chicken arc within the main run, with three infertile eggs to sit on whilst the fertile eggs were being shipped. Initially she seemed to want to get back to the nesting boxes where she had been sitting ( we were getting lots of broken eggs as my other ladies would insist on laying on top of her in that box so I knew we needed to make other arrangements) but with the arc closed off she didn't have that option. I left her alone for 30 minutes or so and when I returned to check on her she was sitting in the 'run' of the arc - not in the nest box where I had placed the eggs - and I thought she was going to quit on me (or just sulk excessively!) but, on closer inspection, she had moved the 3 eggs out to the run to sit closer to the water and food we had arranged for her - smart chicken!
    When the hatching eggs arrived, we moved the food and water closer to the nest box area, and placed the eggs in the nest box. Dorothy was happy with this arrangement for one day and then decided she preferred the outdoor life and has moved all the eggs back out to the run where she has now been sitting for 4 days.

    A rather long winded explanation of how things have worked so far for us but hopefully it helps with what you are planning. You have 3 chances of a successful move and fingers crossed for a good hatch!
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2011

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