Broody? and other silly questions!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Charlene, Jun 11, 2008.

  1. Charlene

    Charlene Songster

    Mar 21, 2008
    This probably sounds stupid but what does broody mean? I keep seeing it but I don't know what it means.

    If a hen lays one egg a day or less then when they sit on them how do they hatch all at once? or do they? And doesn't that mean they're always sitting on the nest hatching more and more chicks? What am I missing?

    What time of day do hens usually lay? Mine free roam and I want to build a nesting area for them but they have different spots for different times of day.

    What are the most important things about the nesting box? Size? Covered? Location?

  2. asher

    asher Chicken Enabler Extraordinaire

    Jan 26, 2007
    Mountains of NC
    Broody is when a pullet or hen decides they want to set on eggs to hatch them. I call them fluffy pancakes...because they literally look like they fluff out and turn in to a pancake over top of the eggs.

    Generally, they will wait until they get a nice sized clutch (amount of eggs) under them before they truly commit to going broody. The eggs will not start growing under her until she sits on them and provides enough heat to get them growing. They will stop laying eggs once they feel they have a good clutch to set on.

    Be careful if they are not seperated from other birds because a broody may steal eggs from others and it's hard if she is setting on eggs of different stages. Either she will abandon the growing eggs to teach the chicks to eat, drink and be chickens OR she will stay on the eggs and the chicks may not make it because she neglects them for the eggs. It's good to mark the eggs you want her to set on and hatch for this reason.

    Hens lay whenever their clock tells them to. :) It varies with each hen.

    Nesting box ~ probably all of the above, size, covered, location and safe. Especially if you want one to hatch out eggs.

    Good luck!

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