Broody Chicken and her clutch


In the Brooder
5 Years
May 5, 2014
Springfield, IL
Yesterday I noticed that I didn't see one of our nine chickens, Emerald, all day. We searched the yard and under the deck, and couldn't find her. I waited until dark and went to check the coop, and when she wasn't there, I really started to worry.

Later that night, my husband went outside with a much better flashlight than my iPhone, and we found her. In the FAR back corner next to the house. I was for sure she was dead. I dropped some water on her, and... nothing. Upon closer look, I saw an egg. This gave me hope, since she was not yet laying (or so I thought).

This morning, it dawned on me that maybe she had gone broody and was trying to hatch that egg. (We have no roosters.)

Here is what we found when we took the deck apart...

Apparently they don't always stop laying alot when they go broody. ;) And, apparently, I was unaware for a LONG time that this was going on.

There's no way to cut off access under the deck, and it's a great place for shade and cool ground for the rest of them during the hot summer.

Suggestions for stopping her for going back under there? I'm assuming we shouldn't eat the eggs, but I didn't see many threads on this, and maybe the advise can help someone out who is searching like me!



6 Years
Dec 10, 2013
If you can't stop them from getting under there I would say leave a way open to get the eggs on a daily basis. Or maybe put a nesting box under there within easy reach and put a few golf balls in it so she will get the idea to lay in it.


Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Nov 27, 2012
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
Sneaky girl(s)!!!

I agree, leave that board unscrewed for now.

Ask yourself, why is she(and maybe others) not laying in the coop nests? I assume you have a coop with nests in it?
Describe or, better yet, post pics of your nests and maybe we can help you figure it out.

Free range birds sometimes need to be 'trained'(or re-trained) to lay in the coop nests, especially new layers. Leaving them locked in the coop for 2-3 days can help 'home' them to lay in the coop nests. They can be confined to coop 24/7 for a few days to a week, or confine them at least until mid to late afternoon. You help them create a new habit and they will usually stick with it.

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