Broody Buff Orp

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MooseHillFarm, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. MooseHillFarm

    MooseHillFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, I think I may have an ideal chance to try natural incubation. My Buff Orp hen has been broody for 3 days. She's made a big nest in the shavings in a back corner of the coop.
    My only roo is also a Buff Orp. Have plenty of eggs so don't care that she's not laying. The other chickens aren't bothering her at all...I think I'll leave her in the spot she chose and let nature take it's hopeful course.
    I've yet to see her leave the nest, or eat or drink. I've put food and water close to her. I've tried hand feeding and watering and just gotten pecked for my efforts.
    I figure I'll give her 21 days, and hope she hatches. If so, I'll do a bit of fencing off of her little corner. Any thoughts on this? Could she starve? Or maybe I just happened to miss her eating or leaving the nest?
     
  2. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's possible that you have missed her getting off the nest. There should be evidence if she has gotten up. By evidence I mean giant broody poop. You can't miss it. It's the size of a golf ball. Sometimes bigger.

    I have one hen who never wanted to get off the nest while she was brooding. I had to get her out every day, and then she would just puff up and sit on the ground where I put her. So, I'd sort of lift her up, making her walk around on her own two legs until her trance broke. Then she'd poop, eat, drink, and run screaming back to the nest.

    I believe that she would have exploded if I hadn't noticed that there was no evidence that she was getting up. Silly girl!
     
  3. MooseHillFarm

    MooseHillFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Wow, broody poop, that's a new one on me, Thanks for the tip. I didn't find any so I can only assume she's ready to explode! Not to mention I've read that dirty eggs won't hatch.
    I'm ready to try moving her, but she pecks like crazy if I try to touch her. Was there a particular time of day or night when you'd rouse your silly girl? Did you have to wear body armor to do it?
     
  4. MooseHillFarm

    MooseHillFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Forced her to move at 6:15 PM with immediate results. She moved, she scratched, pooped ginormously, and ate a bit, for the first time in 3 days.

    Then thankfully, it was right back "on the nest".
     
  5. chickiepoo

    chickiepoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So now you know what a broody poop looks like!
    Others may have better advice, but what I have done about moving broody hens is fixing the box with the eggs I want her to set in it and put it right in front of her. I use a fresh cardboard box from the liquor store with the flaps still intact, a hole cut in one end about two or three inches from the bottom for her to get in and out with straw or hay or whatever for the nest. When she goes in it, I wait til evening, cover it over with a dark towel and quietly move her where I want her to be. Once though the hen kept getting out and back into the laying boxes. After two days I gave up and when she went in the box, I left it in the same stall just a few feet away. She hatched the chicks and was a great mom. Then I throw out any leftover unhatched eggs and the shells and either throw away or burn the box,
     
  6. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    HA! So you saw the broody poop! And smelled it too, I'm sure! I'm really glad that you got her off the nest to do her business.

    All of my hens are extremely docile when they are broody. I can handle them very easily. But if that's not the case with yours, use gloves. You probably already figured that out, though. [​IMG]

    There was never any particular time that I took Sugar off the nest. I did try to do it when the other ladies were out free ranging, but that was just to make it easier on me. I got her out every day for the entire time that she was brooding. I don't know if she would have started getting up by herself, because I just made it a habit to do it every day. And she was a very attentive mother once she hatched her eggs.

    Good luck with your broody and her eggs. It is the coolest thing to have a mother hen and her little babies running around the yard.
     
  7. blue fire

    blue fire Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] you have a broody BO! Then do I have just the pictures for you! By the way they make wonderfull mommies!! [​IMG] I just bought chicks and put them under her early in the morning and she took care of them like they were her own! When she was broody she did the same as lauralou's hen. I think you can tell they are commited when their belly feathers start falling out, that is normal.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, that is so cute! I love the way she is so puffed up in the second picture. The look like big tom turkeys when they are strutting around in all their broody splendor!
     
  9. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here's another cute broody picture:

    [​IMG]
     
  10. MooseHillFarm

    MooseHillFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for posting your broody pictures...it was fun to see the Buff Orp in full on mama action. I can hardly wait....17 days to go if my calculations are correct.
     

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