Broody Bantam, going to try letting her set...need advice


10 Years
Aug 8, 2009
We have little Japanese Bantam that went broody about 10 days ago. I tried breaking her from it for a few days, then decided that I would look for some eggs for her to set on and see what happens. Craigslist brought me a couple of egg offers, and I picked up 7 bantam eggs today for her to try.

She is much too small to get all 7 under her, so I chose 4 of them and slipped them under her tonight at about 10pm. She seems to be able to cover them all, but I am still a little concerned because she has them resting right on the bare bottom of the nesting box. Is that acceptable, or should I try and add straw? I tried adding some a few days ago while she was sitting on a pair of golf balls, but she pushed it right out so they were on the bare linoleum again.

Also, how long can I hold on to the other eggs that I picked up in case the four I chose turn out to be duds? They were all laid this week, so they are no more than 6 days old. I plan to candle the four she is sitting on after 3-4 days, will the others be worth trying after that long?

the eggs will be good for fourteen days, and you can candle at three days to check the eggs if they are white, you may have to wait till day 5 if they have darker shells, if i were you i would candle all the eggs now and give her the ones that have no bacteria contamination and the ones with the air sack in tact, i would try to put straw in again maybe she doesnt like what you giving her try a different type of straw maybe or try shavings, good luck and keep us updated
eggs are good for 8 - 10 days.... in egg carton pointy side down......

My bantam sat on 5 RIR eggs and only one was a dud.... I dropped one during candling.. and she raised her children to 7 weeks old till they were bigger than her...
all Roosters... so they went to a new home...

After candling.... and removing the duds.... just give her the rest....

I piled on the straw made a dip in it.... placed the eggs and put her back on top and left her alone... and 21 days later..... they hatched... The Bantam Rooster layed on the nest with her in the evenings and also after they hatched,,,allowed the children to sit under him too....Bantams are fantastic fathers.....
Thanks to both for the fast replies.

They are brown eggs, and I couldn't see anything at all when I tried candling, except for a very faint shadow of where the yolk is? I am trying to decipher what I see based on the Mink Hollow page , but they are pretty much just one solid color at the moment. I will add a little straw tomorrow and see how she does with it, and then try candling again on Thursday evening.

If nothing else, it is an interesting experiment.
Good luck, I will be watching and waiting with interest. I'm hoping to let one of my standard-size chickens go broody in the spring, and will be trying to learn from all of you on this thread. Let us know how it turns out!
She should be able to cover more than 4....I have a japanese banty hen that is sitting on 13 bantam eggs at the moment, all the eggs are doing great (I've marked and candled them a few times after taking them at night) and are due to hatch out Monday. It seems like a ton of eggs, but she has spread herself out all pancake like and has no problems.

Honestly, I would leave her alone. She will decide what to do about the bedding and such. Mine kicked out all the bedding and is sitting on the eggs on a wood bottom. Give her her eggs and stay back
hands off! Mama Hen knows best.
I peeked in on her this morning, and it looked like there was room for more, so I am going to slip the other 3 under her and see what happens.

I have a bout of Cocci running through the flock at the moment. I am treating it with Sulmet. Does anyone have advice/experience with this combo? Will she continue setting if everyone is sick? She hasn't shown any signs of trouble, and they are not using the box next to her, so she is somewhat isolated. I don't want to risk moving her into quarantine if it will stress her and make her give up.
just remember that the three more will hatch days later.. and you risk the chance of the hen abandoning the nest after the first few have hatched....

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