Broodies didn't like move to isolation... now what?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by farmerwannabe, Jun 10, 2009.

  1. farmerwannabe

    farmerwannabe In the Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2008
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    We have three first-time broodies (and we're first-timers, too). Based on suggestions we read here, we moved two of them (Speckled Sussex) two nights ago, and then the third (Buff Orpington) last night into a spare stall in the barn. As of this morning, all seemed to go well. They'd been acting broody in the coop for 10-15 days.

    This afternoon - two (one Sussex and the BO) are out of their new nexting/broody boxes and walking around the stall. (and fighting each other a little, too). I was hoping that I had just happened to catch them on a "break" from setting, but I checked again two hours later, and they are still up and about.

    Do I hope that they go back to their broody ways tonight? Or do I give up and put them back in the coop with the others? Unfortunately I don't have enough space to give each broody her own stall. One is sitting on eggs that are about 10-14 days along, and the other had fresh eggs put under her when we moved her last night.

    We were so excited at the prospect of having baby chicks again! Maybe I shouldn't have waited so long to move them. Or maybe I should have done it as soon as they started acting broody. I've obviously got a lot to learn.

    Thanks for any ideas you have!
     
  2. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

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    Can you seperate the boxes in the stall- some kind of divider? Dog crate?

    If they don't go back to the eggs soon- I'd concentrate on who you can use to hatch the eggs that are due soon. The ones you set last night are probably still good if you have a broody for them- but if not, and if you don't have an incubator- you may as well eat them.
     
  3. farmerwannabe

    farmerwannabe In the Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2008
    Eastern PA
    Thanks. I did try to separate them within the stall. They each have their own large (2x2 or 3x3) moving box. I put some fencing/chicken wire over the top - just lightly - I thought to keep any predators out. But the hens knocked it off and got out of the boxes...

    I feel a little bad to trap them in a box without the opportunity to get out of the box and stretch their legs, but i guess i need to get a sturdier lid...
     
  4. Judy

    Judy Crowing

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    Sounds to me like you broke the two broodies by moving them. I would give up and put them back with the flock. A broody does not mind the confinement. Mine will only go out once a day, in the morning. I hate the idea of chicken jail so also open the cage in the afternoon, but she won't go anywhere.

    Hatcheries have been trying to breed broodiness out of these chickens, to increase egg production, so these things happen. Be glad you have one good one!
     
  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    You can always move mom and chicks after the chicks hatch to a safe place. Moving mid way though incubation can cause her to stop and just forget being broody.
     
  6. farmerwannabe

    farmerwannabe In the Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2008
    Eastern PA
    Darn. Live and learn, I guess.

    i'm going to wait and see what they do tonight - whether they settle back on the eggs, or on a roost (no real roost in the stall, but I know they can find one if they really want it) [​IMG]

    For next time - how soon after they start acting broody should I move them? I wasn't sure it was really happening at first, so I waited to make sure I wasn't just imagining it.

    Thanks for the support and the suggestions!
     
  7. suebee

    suebee Speaks Silkie Fluently

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    If you have eggs 10-14 days into it, try to put a broody in an enclosed spot and don't let her out. I use cardboard and old window screens.
    Put the eggs in there first...in a corner, so she won't trample them when fighting to get out. Hopefully she will settle down after she realizes she can't get out.
    As far as moving broodies with eggs, I've moved several successfully but they were silkies. I'd try right away...place treats and feathers...they love feathers and leaves to cover their back. And always fresh water.
     
  8. farmerwannabe

    farmerwannabe In the Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2008
    Eastern PA
    Great ideas! Thanks!
     

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